Blinx The Time Sweeper

Blinx The Time Sweeper

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DEVELOPER: Artoon   |   PUBLISHER: Microsoft Game Studios   |   RELEASE: 10/07/2002

If you can imagine for one second the word innovation. What exactly does it mean? Well as defined by Webster’s Dictionary it is as follows: The act of introducing something new.

Something newly introduced. Now with this said does it seem odd to you that this game is getting so much attention because of it’s innovation? Well it certainly shouldn’t. For the first time in console (or gaming in general) history we are presented the first ever 4-D game. What is 4-D you ask? Well it is the ability to control time in a sense and that is exactly what you are able to do in Blinx: The Time Sweeper. Enough lessons for the day let’s move on!

OK now if you can withstand this paragraph you could very well be a better man than I. The story revolving around Blinx is a bit on the wacky side. You are a cat, you work for a Time Control station that distributes time crystals to different worlds. Blinx is one of thousands of what are called “Time Sweepers” that are sent in to clean up the monsters that the crystals form when a glitch occurs. Now that you are done laughing or sitting there with a look on your face that says WTF? To further confuse and amuse you one of the worlds is invaded by the (drum roll please) Tom-Tom Gang and they are stealing all of the time crystals OH NO! Your colleagues decide to close the world off but Blinx has other plans, not to mention he got a chubby when he saw the planet’s princess, damn horny cats! He decided to dive into the world to save the day and alas you have the story behind Blinx!

Sure the story is laughable and a bit far-fetched but one thing is for certain this game is gorgeous. Being developed by the co-creator of Sonic The Hedgehog, Blinx can really show some XBox qualities we have to come to love and cherish. Real time reflections, bump mapping, fur shading, and of course the most gorgeous water you will ever see. The frame rate seems to stay a steady 30FPS and the action never chugs a bit. The environments, while a little on the dull side, look absolutely marvelous. The enemies sure could use some innovation but Blinx himself and the many other imaginative characters are very pleasing to thine eyes.

I swear when a game is developed solely for the XBox the sound truly shines. True 5.1 surround screams through your speakers and begs for attention. The music while a tad on the cheesy side manages to suffice the mood and setting. The weirdest thing about this game, the dialogue is in Japanese! Yup you heard me and XBox game in Japanese how n’ de hell? Yes it is subtitled (geez you think they are that lazy) but hearing a cat talk in Japanese is almost as funny as the storyline!

This part is complicated so let me try and explain it as easily as possible. You have the ability to control time, you do this by collecting time crystals in the correct order. This can become tedious because in order to get a time power you must collect three of the same colored crystals within picking up four of them. Confused? Thought so, ok say you are playing and you see two blue moons and two yellow stars, you pick them all up and you get a bad crystal combo. You must obtain three of the same to gain one power up, if you take the extra care and grab four of the same you get two! Your time sweeper is also used to pick up various trash and items around the stage, these are used to shoot at the baddies, pretty simple eh? Well going back to the time powers these are what make the game 4-D. You use these to control time, you have pause, rewind, fast forward, record, slow, and retry (which is basically an extra man). These are played out like a VCR, once collected you can use them to your advantage in such occasions as a bridge collapses, grab a rewind and make it come back up. These are used throughout the game and can be done at the player’s will.

Sure Blinx is not for everyone, but then again what game is? Comparing it to a Sonic or Mario can be left to the reviewers that only do this because it is their job. Making comparisons is such a cheap way out. I say Blinx is Blinx and nothing more, a game that innovates while at the same time does the most important thing, entertain. I recommend renting to see if you will be able to drudge through the game yourself. A solid effort from a promising team.

Ken McKown
Ken is the Editor-in-Chief of this hole in the wall and he loves to troll for the fun of it. He also enjoys long walks through Arkham Asylum and the cool air of Shadow Moses Island. His turn-ons include Mortal Kombat, Metal Gear Solid and StarCraft.

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