I’m happy to report that Juggle! is picking up some nice feedback after only its first few weeks on Xbox LIVE Indie Games.
Mike Rose over at DIYgamer.com was very kind in his review. You can read the whole thing here, but to summarise he thought “Juggle! shows exactly what happens when a veteran developer studio works its magic on what should in reality be a pretty boring concept.”
At Denki we’ve always sought to make even the most simple components of our games as much fun as possible, and in that regard Juggle! is as much a test of our own design and development mettle as it is a fun, new Denki Game for everyone to enjoy. Aaron, in particular was very pleased that the work he’d put in to getting the bat control to work well with a thumbstick had been recognised for what he always told us it was – “genius”.
Mike does make the point, quite rightly, that you’ll have seen everything in the game within a few hours. I think Mike’s being overly generous there – you’ll probably see everything Juggle! has to offer in less than an hour if you try; however, judging the game that way is missing the point. It’s a bit like weighing a book to see whether the story’s any good.
Juggle! lays everything on the table from the start, just like all the classic arcade games it pays homage to. It was never designed with the intention of keeping a player’s attention for hours on end at a single sitting; rather, it was designed to be a quick burst of concentrated fun for players to come back to again and again whenever they had a few minutes spare. Think of it as a bit of chocolate to Red Dead Redemption’s twelve-course banquet. Banquets are great when I have the time, but often all I really want is a bag of Maltesers!
I suspect there’s as much playtime to be had in Juggle! as there is in something like Red Dead; the difference is that Juggle! is best served in small portions over a looooong time, whereas Red Dead is best served in large portions over a short period of time. I know, for example, that I’ve probably put as much time in to Orbital as I have in to Batman: Arkham Asylum, but I doubt I’ve ever played Oribital for more than 30 minutes in a single sitting.
In other news, Juggle! also made “Indie Game Of The Week” over at Dealspwn thanks to Jonathan Lester (clearly another gamer of exquisite tastes!), which again was wonderful feedback to receive. Jonathan noted that Denki’s Value-For-Money-Guarantee also applies to Juggle! for Xbox LIVE Indie Games, and so there should be absolutely no reason not to pick up a copy to try out the great new two-player modes for yourself. We wanted to make the two-player modes just as snack-sized as the single-player modes, and so far the feedback suggests we’ve been pretty successful in that regard.
Anyway, thanks very much for all the good feedback so far everyone. Keep it coming!