Nov 16, 2007
There was a game released for the short-lived Nuon system called Freefall 3050 AD. It was about this supercop who apparently jumped down large holes to save the world or something. No one really knows, because the game sucked, so no one bothered playing for more than a few minutes. Screwjumper can best be described as the spiritual successor to that game.
Here you're one of a handful of out-of-work miners, replaced by technologically advanced mining machines. To exact your revenge, you and your cohorts jump down mineshafts, hitting green things and avoiding red things (seriously) until you reach the reactor at the bottom. There you try to blow the thing up, and then jump back out of the mineshaft.
You do that 20 times. Then the game's over.
But Screwjumper's problems run deeper than the boring premise. This is some of the worst control in a video game. As you streak down each shaft, you're supposed to destroy various green objects by smashing into them. But no matter how perfectly you line up one of your targets, it feels like the game moves your character up and out of the way at random. And then, on the flight back up the shaft, for some reason the game moves to a first-person viewpoint, and features even more finicky controls.
Screwjumper is another one of those Live Arcade games that feels more like it should be a bonus mission in a more fully-realized title. And not a very good bonus mission, at that. It wears thin in the amount of time it takes to finish the opening level. And at 800 points, it's way overpriced.