Originally posted January 18th 2015 on the Seafoam Gaming forums
Title: Thomas Was Alone
System: Wii U (eShop)
Release date: 11/25/2014
The main game/story
In this unique game made by Mike Bithell, you take control of Thomas, a rather simple looking AI as you guide him and his new friends around each level, as they try to discover the meaning of their existence… It’s rather intriguing, and is a story that will make you committed to finding out the answer for yourself as well.
For a game with the deep story I mentioned above, you’d think it would have very advanced graphics or at the very least, 16 bit sprites to express the story. Well, the amazing thing about this game is the fact that the graphics are extremely simple. Thomas and friends are simple four sided shapes, with no face, arms or legs to speak of whatsoever. The backgrounds of the levels in each chapter are made to have these fit in nicely, so that the simple shapes do not cause a distraction to the player.
Music and sound effects:
Most of the music in this game is simple and calm, mainly because there’s no major catastrophes going on in this story. No time disruptions, no empire trying to take over the world, no rebel army, no epic battle to the finish, nothing. Just is a simple soundtrack that perfectly fits the calm nature of this game.
This game also has a narrator narrating over the course of the adventure, which sounds quite nice and is similar to what a good audiobook reader would sound like. You can turn him off if you prefer to read these lines, however. There’s even commentary by the developers you can turn on, which is a really awesome bonus as it gives the players insight on how the levels work as they are playing through them.
The gameplay is rather simple. Guide Thomas and whatever friends he may have with him to the exits for each one of them in every level. It isn’t a simple task, however. You must solve puzzles along the way to open up a path for each of his friends to go on in order to reach their exit, as some paths Thomas may be able to take others cannot due to their differing abilities. This leads to some fun puzzle solving and creative level design, and I honestly had fun with every level thrown at me throughout the course of the game.
Thomas Was Alone may be a simple game, but with a great story that equals some of the most advanced games available, a calming soundtrack and amazing level design, there’s a reason other versions of this game were critically acclaimed by other reviewers, and that’s because it’s a great game with lots of content that shows how games don’t really need advanced graphics to express their stories. Curve Digital did a great job porting this over to the Wii U, and I’m really glad they did to let others experience this wonderful game. If you have a system with this game on it, I strongly encourage that you pick it up, you won’t regret it! I give Thomas Was Alone a 9 out of 10 and strongly recommend it to all puzzle platforming fans.
Thanks to Curve Digital for the review code.