GATOR-ON, Friend to Wetlands!

This game appears to be about giant mecha monsters duking it out over Florida. That in itself is an amusingly silly premise, bringing to mind cartoons like Transformers or Captain Planet. It is clear that the author doesn't take the eco-activist background particularly seriously, when one of the characters deemed special enough to pilot her own giant alligator is a schoolgirl noted for having written a particularly heartfelt essay on the subject. Or when our hero's particular robot alligator is fuchsia in colour.

However, what promised to be an enjoyable tongue-in-cheek romp through the brightly-coloured world of Saturday morning cartoons (where violence IS the answer to everything) is marred by some unfortunate design decisions. The initial map, for instance, is a huge, sprawling mass whose only purpose is to hide two locations, the idea being that puzzles must be solved to find them. A better solution might have been to implement the wetlands as a single location ("Lost in the wilderness", perhaps) with those locations only accessible through the actions that solve the appropriate puzzles. Similarly, the penultimate puzzle (escaping from Pyth-Nor's coils) has a clear solution hobbled by the fact that the player has never been told how to achieve that particular end.

In the end, I was disappointed that my time as Gator-on was limited to the one fight with Pyth-Nor and little else. There was little to make me think that I really was working up towards this climax; rather, I thought that this was where the story was meant to begin. Some sense of urgency, and some better understanding of the threat of Pyth-Nor, in the beginning might have alleviated this.

As a breakfast, this is a bowl of Froot Loops, somewhat soggy, washed down with a glass of organic soy milk.