Saturday 26 June 2021

Colors (Gizmondo review)

Developer: Indie Studios
Publisher: Gizmondo
Released: N/A

Colors is an unreleased third-person shooter that takes inspiration from the Grand Theft Auto series.

It takes place in the fictional Crimson City and includes seven districts (separated by loading screens) such as China Town, Docklands, Grand Central and Little Italy. There's 50 missions and various shops allow you to upgrade your weapons, buy health packs, or purchase drugs to sell on the street. At times the missions can feel like basic fetch quests and the inability to drive vehicles means you have to slowly investigate the local territory on-foot. Thankfully, each area feels distinct (if not a little barren in terms of pedestrians) and the missions that do deviate from the simple delivery formula are generally fun with highlights including robbing a jewellery store by blowing up a safe, or the task where you need to kill a construction worker, bury his body in cement and reach the exit without touching the wet floor. The game also has a good sense of humour, particularly in the mission which requires you to kill a Travis Bickle lookalike from the movie Taxi Driver (1976) after he begins stalking a prostitute! Sadly, the combat is weak as it's painfully slow to cycle between items meaning that if you suddenly find yourself being shot while spray painting turf tags you'll be caught between a rock and a hard place as you fumble to re-equip your gun. Also, for some reason the developers decided to implement a moving reticle that sways wildly like a darts game instead of adequately locking onto your target; this makes each fight a chore and I really don't like the fact that you're always open to fire while your reticle waits to swing back onto an opponent. The graphics are excellent though with a solid draw distance and consistent frame-rate.

Colors is an ambitious title that succeeds in its varied, detailed locales and there's plenty of content to keep you occupied for hours. However, its appealing setting isn't fully complimented with memorable missions and the clunky combat system plagues the entire adventure and forces you to continually overstock on health packs to survive.

Random trivia: In 2015, Colors was planned for re-release on Google Play and iOS, but (as of this review) has yet to surface.

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