This is Dylan from Q-Games, the company behind PixelJunk, and following on from my blog entry last week where I listed what we’ve been doing for the past few months. This entry is all about Eden Encore.
First things first, what have we added? Well, basically we have added five whole new stages, each one choc-a-bloc full of ideas and gimmicks. We also designed five brand new backgrounds for them (each background for a garden is programmed uniquely just for that garden’s style – just in case you hadn’t noticed that in the original), and Baiyon went away and created five brilliant new tracks of music to match it all up.
To make things a little easier we are going to retro-patch the original Eden to have a new feature we created for Encore. This is the three-seed smart-bomb power your Grimp now has. Simply put, if you jump into three full seeds in a row, all the “Prowlers” on the screen explode into a big cloud of pollen. Everyone who boots up their original Eden in a few weeks will be patched and get this feature, so look out for that!
Thinking up new stages for Eden was hard work. We put a lot of stuff into the original game, especially the gardens onwards from garden 04, and we racked our brains for new and interesting ideas to put into this expansion pack, and we think we found some pretty cool ones! One of the first stages has you in a Garden where all the plants are huge and thick, and at the same time there are loads of them, all intertwined. This is a type of stage we didn’t have in the original game – falling isn’t much of an issue in this garden because the vines are practically everywhere.
Also, in another garden we have implemented a zero-G item that once you collect, lets you float and control your Grimp with no fear of falling (well, until the effect wears off of course) which is crazily fun with three players! At the same time that garden is full of some pretty cool puzzles to solve, and we really go to town with the no gravity mechanism. In one of the final gardens we have implemented an entire “mirror” garden that you go in and out of freely via portals scattered throughout. It’s a lot of fun making your way back and forth between the two subtly different “mirror” gardens – what might be a cannon in one is a teleporter in the other; what is open space in one, might be closed off in the other. It’s a lot of fun solving the puzzles.
Right at the end of the game, if you collect all the 25 new Spectra we’ve added, we have put in a big present for our fans – one that will enable you to play the entire game again in a completely different way, so that’s really something for everyone to look forward to.
What else can I say really? This expansion pack isn’t just “some extra levels”; it is full of rich design and will give you weeks of fun, so it’s definitely worth $5.99!