Finally an auto-scroller for traditional gamers.

User Rating: 7 | BADLAND: Game of the Year Edition PS4

When I think of auto-scrollers games like FlappyBird and Super Mario Run come to mind. Until Badland I've never really felt like any of this kind of game really had much staying power. Badland has enough depth to appeal to hardcore gamers while the difficultly curve is still gentle enough to attract a wide audience. In addition to solid gameplay Badland has a very distinct visuals that really help distinguish it from most games on the market. This game could have easily gone under my radar and it would have been a shame.

In Badland you start each level as single flying fuzz ball. All you can do is move your character around the screen. To adjust your elevation you simply hold a button to fly up and let go to fly down. You have to keep ahead of the screen as it moves or you'll have to go back to your last checkpoint. Let are lots of obstacles such as walls, saw blades, and spikes. Some things will just slow you down while others straight up kill you.

Different pick-ups will adjust the speed of the level as well as make you larger or smaller. You may need to be large to push a boulder or small to fit through a narrow space. Some times the game will force you to pick up certain items while at other times you'l have to go out of your way. The controls are very solid but since you are always ascending or descending your navigation will never be perfect.

A key element to success is the fact that certain power-ups multiply the number of creatures you control. So you may have twenty creatures at a time and everything single one of them is controlled by your actions. It is almost impossible to have everyone survive because some are too high or too low and hitting objects is inevitable. Many of the toughest sections of the game are made so you are bound to lose all but one or two creatures. There is a bonus, a high score of sorts, for trying to see how many creatures you have left at the end of each level.

Badlands is such a simple concept yet it is enriched with clever mechanics that are taught at a good pace. It seems so simple at first but it quickly gets more and more interesting. It would be a shame not to mention that the game can be played-through in co-op mode which is honestly just as or more fun. The first thing that is bound to make an impression is the gorgeous art. The backgrounds are stunning; its too bad you'll be too busy trying to survive to pay much attention to them. You can easy get five hours of fun out of this game, more than that if you're up to beating some of the more challenging levels.