One dollar. Yep. Reveal the Deep is Ghetto-approved!
For just a buck I got to enjoy two hours of moody, platforming puzzle fun. Lazy Monday Games' first offering, Reveal the Deep, is an underwater shipwreck-themed platformer. I actually picked this up during a sale for even less than the one-dollar asking price. This is Ghetto Gamer after all.
This game took me about 2 hours to play (That's value!) so don't expect a rich and nuanced story. That said, the story that unfolds during your deep-sea adventure is interesting and well-told.
You play as an unnamed character. A diver. With a big headlamp on his helmet. By turning the light on and off, you sort of shift between the ship as it is now - cold and haunted - and how it once was - colorful and filled with life. Switching the light on and off also reveals long-since destroyed platforms. For the sake of platforming of course.
The puzzles in Reveal the Deep are pretty easy. Since I'm not all that into puzzle games, I liked this very much. It is rare that I finish a game at all, let alone a puzzle game without referring to walkthroughs. Actually, come to think of it, I did have to cheat a little. Turns out there's a bug in the 2nd chapter that keeps you from progressing if resolve actions in the wrong order. Oops!
Reveal the Deep's plot is sad and brooding. Throughout the game, you uncover letters and journals that reveal what happened aboard the sunken ship. It's a sad tale with a fairly satisfying ending.
I would have liked a little more depth to the story itself. Lazy Monday took more of a less-is-more approach, I think. The story was fully fleshed out, but was very basic.
I have to admit that it took me a few minutes to adjust to the underwater feel of Reveal the Deep. The player moves slowly and I'm really impatient. By the end of the first chapter I was afraid of getting bored. But that was when the story opened up and the deep-sea ambiance started drawing me in.
This game is a puzzler first and a platformer second. And even at that, the puzzles take the backseat to the enjoyment of wandering through two submerged worlds.
Other than that small bug I mentioned , the gameplay is smooth and simple. You can play it with one hand. The controls are responsive (on the keyboard) and straightforward. There is no music, but the ocean sounds and other noises fill the void. The lack of music seems to advance the plot a bit on its own.
For a dollar, there's no excuse not to pick up Reveal the Deep. The 2 hours it took me to complete felt like the perfect length for the price and the style of game. If Reveal The Deep was a 4 or 5 hour game, I think the slo-mo movement of the diver would have started getting old. Lazy Monday knew when to call it good, wrap up their story and end the game.
Some small advices for you.
I would (if I had time for it,) fix that chapter-2 bug. There are a few videos that explain the bug and show how to get past it. I know people are only paying $1 for this, but if you wanted to improve or patch it, I would do that. I almost gave up when I got stuck.
I happen to know too, that you are working on a new release. While I doubt it is going to be another underwater exploration game, if it is, I would urge you to consider how fast/slow the diver moves vs. the length of your game. I really enjoyed Reveal The Deep for 2 hours. Were it much longer, I would probably have quit.
I also assume your next game will be longer and more expensive. If you keep up the masterful and brooding atmosphere you accomplished in this game, I might actually consider paying full price. You guys are destined for great things!