Oure is the new release from Heavy Spectrum. All you need to do is fly around and save the dying world that your parents live in. Simples. Time to slip into a nice silk kimono and zen my way through the game.
Oure is a fairly simple concept to grasp. You are a little girl sent to a new world to save the world you and your parents currently live in. No pressure. Your new world is a cloud city and clouds are your friends. When you pass through the portal you turn into what can only be described an a flying elongated fox with a dodgy moustache. You’re supposed to be a dragon, a Chinese one, one of the long ones. Your dragon flies effortlessly around, but make sure you conserve stamina for long climbs and boosting. Oure moves around as effortlessly as your dragon, go places, explore the scenery, see what you find. Collect blue balls (probably called orbs) and yellow ones as well to complete tasks. There are no real instructions as to what you are doing, but that’s just keeping with the story. Oure invites you to just take a mystical journey as a dragon that you move around at your own pace. There is no sense of urgency here, no rush, no zombies to kill, and no spaceships to shoot down. Imagine a hard day at the office, some people de-stress themselves by going to the gym and taking out their aggression, Oure is yoga. Whilst playing the game I almost felt like I was meditating, there is a calm tranquillity about flying dragons that I cannot explain. The way everything moves so slickly just makes any negative emotion seep out of your body. This is a happy game.
Well that’s how it started anyway. However, just like most marriages, things started to change soon. With no real guidelines though, things were maybe always destined to go south. The wonderment was replaced by just wondering what to do next. What are the flags that turn blue for? Where is the next puzzle? Why am I on the back of a flying Titan? After 2 hours of gameplay these mysteries still remain unsolved. Frustration levels do start to increase and bewilderment does creep in. The game does look calming though, so the onset of these is somewhat delayed. Rather like watching ‘The Lovely Bones’, it starts picturesque and ends up just being confusing and pointless. Collected lots of blue balls though. Yoga soon evolved into a spinning class for my head and my brain started to hurt. I had to stop playing for an hour or two before revisiting the clouds. Back to tranquillity and more blue balls. This time I failed to last as long, frustration kicked in sooner and I feel less like yoga and more like a spinning class. Oure is basically peaceful grinding. In certain areas things pop out of the clouds, they look bad, do not touch them. Why they are there I have no idea, I think the concept was left over from a different game. I got very confused.
Maybe my expectations are too high? After all, the girl wouldn’t have known what to do, so why should I get to have an advantage? Are games getting so repetitive these days that brain power is no longer required? Maybe credit is due for creating a game that can’t be solved in a short amount of time?
Be wary of the controls, sometimes left is right, and right is left. The camera seems to get confused and it is possible to actually lose your dragon from the screen. Too many moves and it’s like the developers have decided to drink a significant amount of Sambuca before testing the camera work.
Oure has very simplistic but beautiful scenery. Fly your dragon into a cloud and watch the ripples, or it disappear into the darkness of the inside of a cloud. Hit a cloud and watch as your dragon bends itself to the contours in the most ridiculous way. I don’t know whether to admire or cringe. The motion of the dragon is effortless when it behaves, and the graphics do the job that is required. A beautiful tranquil environment is created so that the game has a peaceful feel to it.
I’ll be honest, I didn’t even notice the audio in Oure until I got to this section of the review. It is clearly understated and non essential for game play. There is no drama to it, no sense of urgency is created, it’s just there. It probably fits the mood of the game, it just keeps on going.
Oure has been released after a couple of better games in the same format. It fails to live up to the expectations of the first few minutes and becomes a chore very quickly. I can’t see the game being as successful as its predecessors which is a shame as it started with so much promise. It is rather like climbing into a Ferrari, sitting in the seats, admiring the experience that you are about to have only to discover it’s got the engine from a Fiat Cinquecento in it. Oure lacks the substance to succeed, but if you want a really nice flying dragon simulator I guess you have found your match.
Oure glides serenely before crashing to a Thumb Culture Bronze Award
Disclaimer: A code was received in order to write this review.