Thursday, 10 January 2013

Aquaria: Swimming / Cooking / Killing

Appearances can be deceiving. 

In my last playthrough of Aquaria, I had kinda deemed it a casual game. You swim about, collecting recipes and singing to things; avoiding crabs and the like. So upon launching it from steam, and after stirring from my red crystal cocoon, I was preparing myself for pretty much more of the same.

What I didn't anticipate was becoming some sort of fire fish daemon, who in turn would be hell bent on destroying any squid/crab/fish who stood in my way...

(though I did sing a lot...and collected more recipes)

You join me in my underwater kitchen. I started making some snacks for my singing adventure; some hot soup, a few fajitas before leaving my humble abode for the balmy waters known as "Home Springs"

It didn't start out great in Home Springs, I met a fat fish. And then essentially got mugged by said fat fish. I felt powerless. All I could do was sing at him. This did nothing. I swam around him, into him. All to no avail. 

You'll get whats coming to you Tubbs....sooner or later.

A few swims later I stumble across the Song Cave. No prizes for guessing what was coming next. Though...the stone "art" in the background did have a certain vibe to it...
Err....(or is it just my dirty mind...)
I see some bits on the wall that relate to notes I can sing, and after selecting them individually, they light up accordingly. Played in order, you get a nice little tune. But then nothing.

I try to play the tune again. Nothing. The feedback the wall is giving me, indicates I'm doing the right thing. Yet nothing is happening. I start to swim about and sing the notes in a different order. Nowt. I play them slowly. Nothingness. I play them quickly. Again, zero things occurring in this game. Now I'm getting weird looks from my housemate...

I look at the "art" again. Ahh...I think I saw something that looked like this earlier. I click on the art. The camera fades and I'm shown the area I passed earlier on. Durrrr.....

After reaching that area I play the tune. One last time. Low and behold! The gate opens and I swim inside. Victory. Inside this cave is a blue crystal. I swim closer, placing my webbed fingers on it.

Seems okay...
Well hello there!
A purple fish woman appears! She gets inside my head and then gives me a song (I think...I wasn't really paying attention) which allows me to pick up large boulders. On my way out, I see a stone to test my new song against. After lifting the stone I find a Leaf Poultice recipe. Cashback. 

Basically a Leaf Poultice
Now that I can lift stones I wonder if I can...

I race back to find Tubbs, pulling the boulder along for the ride. I swim above Tubbs and release my grip on the boulder. It crashes into him/her and he/she flashes red. Ha! Take that you! I do this several times before getting bored and swim on. Tubbs is no doubt mocking me under his/her gills.

Have at you Tubbs!!!
After swimming through some narrow caves the music gets a bit more atmospheric. I meet Michelle, but I avoid her advances. Not today thanks.

I swim through to the Energy Temple, and get trapped. I'm facing up against a statue thing, that shouts out song notes. As I match them, it takes damage. After my rap battle, I seem to get indigestion...

After a short sequence I turn into a FIRE DAEMON. YEAH! Now my right mouse clicks fling fire at all who stand/swim before me. I solve some puzzles involving my new ability, and learn about the charge ability (which is a much more powerful fire ball thing) and that at any time, I can be non-daemon if I need to be. 

There are these white spheres, which after shooting with my fire power, open doors - which seems very handy indeed. I pass down a single section that has only a save point in it. My gaming gut tells me something big is gonna kick off. You only put a save point right before a...

I swim to left, only to find a huge cat / fish / immediately spam out all my fire abilities. He backs off; firing three spheres of something at me as he does. If I swim close, it lashes out at me, taking a chunk of health off me. I eat one of my fajitas. I keep firing at him; pushing him further back. Something tells me this isn't the correct strat...

Hang on. It's guarding one of the white sphere things that can be activated by my fire. I switch back to normal fishwoman mode, and sing to pick it up; dragging it to the start of the tunnel. It clicks in perfectly to one of the pedestals and I charge a fireball into it. Now it activates a laser that fires for a short while. Ah ha! 

So now I have to lead it into the laser beam bit and then activate it. I'm guessing maybe three times? 

I switch to my other form and swim near the beast. If I make it lash out at me, it creeps forward. So I try this a few times. The beast inches towards the laser. It clips me a few times, so I consume my soup...which gives me +1 to speed? I wanted health not speed!! That's not how soup works in real life! If anything, we get a -1 to speed after eating/drinking it...urgh....I eat another fajita.

It lines up with the laser and unleash a fireball into the sphere. BZZZT. The beast recoils. I swim back towards it. He takes a nasty bite at me, which drops me to orange health. I have no more healing items, and bearing in mind that I only have one life, I must be cautious.

Stay on target...stay on target!
BZZZT! The second laser hits him. One more to go and he's down. I lead him towards the laser for the last time. But he's worked out whats going on. He doesn't step into the laser! I swim about, taking a few hits from his claws. I've just entered red health! SHIT. I swim some more, but he's just not taking the hint. I fire the laser one more time, maybe he needs to see it go off once before moving again? Nothing. He taunts me by firing more orbs at me. My life is but a centimetre of red on the health bar. The edges of the screen are flashing red.

He takes a swipe at me and I narrowly avoid it. Only now do I remember I have a shield song. Idiot. I activate it and that seems to protect be from the orbs, allowing me some time to think. He lunges at me again, and I notice that his claw goes past the beam.

I switch to Fire Daemon, and charge my ability by holding the right mouse button. I swim towards him, then dash away. As his claw passes the beam area, I relinquish my grip on the mouse.

BZZZZZZZT!!! The beast falls.

After a moment, the camera switches back to me, and I appear to be crying. Fish regret? Or fishy tears of joy? I'm note sure. I'm treated to short narrative sequence which explains that the blue fish cats, killed the purple fish women in a sorta power rage thing. 

I head home, back to the safety of Home Springs. Next to my fire crystal, I see a white sphere. After opening the door, I'm presented with a scenario I am more accustomed to.

Basically a spicy Fajita
I contemplate hunting Tubbs down, getting back the seeds he/she ate, and dishing out some fire based justice/revenge. But decide this can wait another day. Back to my red crystal it is.


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