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GO Series: 10 Second Run - DSiWare Review

Game Info
GO Series: 10 Second Run

DSiWare | Gamebridge / G-Mode | 1 Player | Out Now | 200 Nintendo Points
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Review
5th November 2010; By KnucklesSonic8

10 Second Run may just be the ultimate "short burst game" for the DSiWare service. It may not have loads of content to back it up, nor does it feel like anything special when you stand back and get a good look at it. But it's undeniable that 10 Second Run carries a notable amount of appeal. Anyone who looks to DSiWare releases for killing brief instances of boredom on trips or in waiting rooms, you'll likely want to give this a try.

    There are 50 different stages in all, each executed with some of the most basic presentation you'll ever see, encompassing both their design and the repetitive music. You control a red stickman using the Control Pad to move, and the A Button to move, guiding him to the end of each level. In case it wasn't already obvious, the timer for each and every stage only allows for 10 seconds of play time. So taking your sweet time won't be doing you any favors at all. Foregoing any sort of sparkle or flair, 10 Second Run is really basic, making it devoid of any sort of offensiveness and totally accessible for almost anyone.

    The first few challenges have no obstacles whatsoever beyond the blocks and platforms that make up each stage. Upon reaching Course 4, though, you'll need to watch out for blue flames that will burn you to a crisp on contact. And from Course 11 onwards, spiked enemies will get thrown into the mix, moving back and forth along a given path with the goal of trying to psych you out. But don't worry - things don't get too difficult until about two-thirds into the game.

    Especially towards the end of the game, you'll also need to contend with really small blocks that put you on the verge between life and death if you don't time your jumps carefully. Moving platforms and blocks that crumble as soon as you step on them force you to act quickly, leaving little room for thinking and planning. Much of it boils down to trial and error and having the will power to keep trying. The last few stages can be incredibly frustrating after many tries, but when you do finally clear them, it's a noteworthy accomplishment.

    
Clearing a stage will grant you with a medal to gawk at, and a record of your best time to aim for on later plays. This is one of those games where much of the replay value comes from improving your best times over and over again, searching for the best possible method to complete each stage. Getting together with friends to compare stats will create added motivation for bragging rights with high scores.

    In addition to the main 'Trial' mode, there's also a 'Training' option where you can play any of the 50 stages without the imposition of the tight time limit. This becomes handy for looking for strategies to improve your times, especially if you're having trouble reaching the 10-second mark in any of the stages. There's also a 'Marathon' mode where you try to clear all 50 levels in quick succession. Since there's no save function, this mode requires endurance, and patience especially towards the end. You could spend more than 20 minutes on here, depending on how many lives you lose along the way from failed attempts. As for myself, after I got a record on here, I decided not to return to this because of how difficult the last couple stages were.

    After clearing Marathon mode, you'll unlock two secret modes: 1-Second Run and 10-Second Timer. 1-Second Run has a total of 10 courses that offer even tenser gameplay than the normal bunch. Having only one second to get through each level is pretty crazy, but quite fun in its own right. 10-Second Timer is a basic mode where you simply try to stop the time as close to the 10-second mark as possible. It's nothing substantial and doesn't exactly do much for the package, but it can be a nice diversion for a bit.

    10 Second Run may be simple in its execution, but it's also quite fun. There's a decent structure here, and both the unlockable modes and the medal system are great additions to keep players engaged. The last few levels in the game are particularly challenging and will definitely serve as a test of patience. It may not be the strongest of the 200-Point releases, but it can certainly hold its own.


23/30 - Good

Gameplay 8/10 - Controls are extremely accessible, later stages are a case of trial and error, new obstacles get thrown in gradually
Presentation 6/10 - Really basic but oddly enough it does work, decent music and structure, repetitive music
Enjoyment 4/5 - Can be fun for a few minutes at a time, both challenging and frustrating towards the end, at its best when played in short bursts
Extra Content 5/5 -Medals to aim for on all stages, Marathon Mode, unlockable modes, can look for new strategies to beat personal bests, only $2!

Equivalent to a score of 77% (percentage score is approximate and based solely on the previously stated rating)

Review by KnucklesSonic8
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