Tell me, doctor, where are we going this time? Is this the fifties? Or nineteen ninety-nine?
Welcome to our review of the physics based platformer Time Loader.
Developer Flazm have a strong vision of nostalgia, music and time travel. Does it do enough to stand out from the crowd? Watch on to find out.
Hello everyone it’s Craig from UDS and welcome to our review of Time Loader, a game about a little guy like this affecting time and space. In this video we’re going to tell you everything you need to know before you play. And of course don’t forget to subscribe for more on gaming in the future. You’re not going to want to miss it!
So Time Loader is a 2D puzzle platformer where you play as a small robot changing the events of time as you go. Your creator Adam had a life changing fall when he was younger and since then has been trying to find a way to alter the course of time. Being an avid science man he has been able to crack the code of time travel (albeit with a microwave) and sends his little robot back to the past to change the course of history.
The story of Time Loader is one of its more interesting parts of the game. Playing as the nameless small robot you go back in the 90s to change history but let’s just say things do not go as planned and our robot needs to do some thinking off the top of his tiny yellow dome.
The game takes place at Adam’s family home and will see you travelling from room to room, to shed, to garden trying to carry out your mission. Playing as the robot I have dubbed “Lil Yella” is a pleasurable experience for most of the game. The only frustrating part I found with the controls is when being too close to an object, it appears to hinder the height of the jump. This can affect the enjoyment of some of the more time sensitive puzzles that appear.
Speaking of puzzles, Time Loader’s come in the way of obstacles in the world. You’ll find yourself using your grabber arm to pull things, throw things and disrupt parts of the house to get to the area where you will do it all again. Due to its level design and helpful narration by “Lil Yella” the puzzles are not particularly challenging and usually solvable with the resources within the same area. You will feel like a genius for 95% of this game but if you are like me, you will rage at the other 5% and feel like you’re headbutting a brick wall.
The controls of Time Loader keep it simple. Move, interact, shoulder buttons for the claw, and the aforementioned hit and miss jump. It manages to keep gameplay fresh with different upgrades throughout. Early on you get an enhanced jump which makes “Lil Yella” feel much more fluid, you also get upgrades in the form of a screwdriver, a harpoon and the ability to conduct electricity. This all helps you on your journey and makes light of certain obstacles as you go.
The level design in Time Loader is a puzzle within itself. During the game Adam’s house takes on a variety of looks and the intrigue is how it changes: new areas open up and somewhere or something you may have already traversed is blocked off encouraging you to find another solution. Of course there are a litany of items and references straight out of various pop culture classics. The game is set in the 90s after all and whilst the art style isn’t hyper realistic it plays into your perceptions of this era perfectly.
The music is a perfect accompaniment to the 90s nostalgia trip that the game provides and would recommend it outside of the game to the lover of low-fi beats and chill times. Bravo to the composer whose name I couldn’t find.
The story was definitely a surprise in regards to how much it stuck with me after finishing it. Many of the main beats are presented in a watercolour style but the most memorable moments come from the environmental storytelling within Time Loader. There are notes, computers, letters, books and codes that are completely missable but add so much to the story. How much does it add? Well it wouldn’t be a time travel game without being able to affect the story would it?
Based on how many optional objects you decide to interact with will decide what ending you may get! Take your time, take note of your surroundings, explore a little more. It will definitely enhance your overall enjoyment of the game by the end of it.
We’ve almost reached the end of 2021 and after the last few years people are looking upon nostalgia and the better times in a much more different way than before. This game perfectly encapsulates this nostalgia of the 90s and what it was like (minus the time travel obviously).
People who remember that era will not find it pandering and the people who do not understand all the references will not be deterred from this experience, which is a solid puzzle platformer albeit with a few issues that may annoy a few players.
So there you have it. What did you think of Time Loader? Please let us know in the comments below and….
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