Zero Zero Zero Zero
Developer: Alvarop Games
Publisher: Ratalaika Games
Genre: Arcade, Platform
Platform: PlayStation 4
Age Rating: 05/02/2020
Release Date: Pegi 3
A code was provided for review purposes.
I like to think of myself as an open minded and non-judgemental kinda guy. But I’m forced to admit that I make assumptions based on first impressions and visuals all the time. Be it reading the blurb on the back of a book or while selecting which sandwich to buy for lunch. I won’t deny that when Zero Zero Zero Zero first fell into my review pile, I unfairly judged it and was in no rush to play it. However, first impressions are often wrong, qualities are sometimes well hidden.
Simple To Learn, Difficult To Master
0000 is a deceptively simple yet challenging puzzle platformer. You play as a tiny 1-bit gunslinger on a journey through 100 levels of varying obstacles and dangers. The controls are simple; run, shoot and double jump across and around danger. Simple but satisfying, the jump and movement controls feel tight and responsive at all times. Pinpoint jumping is in your hands, if you can master it that is.
Your little gunslinger’s trigger finger gets plenty of action in this game, blasting through destructible barriers and troublesome enemies to clear a path to your goal. Each of the 100 levels has a shining treasure that must be collected; once collected a door appears at the starting point of the level and you must make your way safely back to it to progress to the next level.
Not As Easy As It Looks
Some levels seem so simple that they don’t warrant a second of thought, but then you die, and realise it wasn’t as easy as it looked. A really great element of 0000 is that when you die a new level is randomly selected from the list of uncompleted levels. This means you can’t grind out a level until you know it like the back of your hand but it also means you never get stuck to the point of frustration on a single level.
0000’s levels are surprisingly varied for such a simple game. It has classic platform obstacle levels full of spikes and falls. There are bullet hell projectile dodging levels. Timed puzzle levels that require split second reactions. Even chase levels that see you pursued by an unkillable enemy. No two levels feel exactly that same and combined with the random selection of levels, you really never know what is coming next.
I definitely ran into some levels that defeated me time and time again until I finally nailed it with a roar of satisfaction and triumph. Zero Zero Zero Zero offers a platinum trophy for those willing to put the effort in; seemingly not too much effort is required as the trophy pops after completing just 34 out of 100 levels.
Sounds Like A Winner
I play a fair number of indie games and during university I watched a fair amount of student films, and they often share the same problem of having terrible soundtracks. Not so in the case of 0000; its soundtrack fits the tone of the game perfectly and is engaging without ever getting invasive or irritating.
The game has two play modes; Standard and Hardcore. Standard allows for infinite lives and the ability to save and continue your progress. Hardcore mode offers only one life and no saves to complete all 100 levels; good luck with that people.
My only real complaint about this game is its total lack of colour. It really saps a huge chunk of visual interest from the game for me. Just a little splash of yellow on the gunfire or red on the laser beams would have gone a really long way.
Zero Zero Zero Zero Or Hero Hero Hero Hero?
When I sat down to play this game my expectations were not high, yet it delivered a challenging and satisfying platform experience, smooth controls and a great soundtrack. It just goes to show you really shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. First impressions can fade just as fast as they are made, it’s never too late to change your mind.
Rapid Reviews Rating
You Can Buy Zero Zero Zero Zero now from the PlayStation Store
You can find and read our reviews on OpenCritic.