Game Ramblings #2 – Thoughts on Box Boy!

More Information from Nintendo


  • Genre:Puzzle/Platformer
  • Platform: 3DS eShop


  • Main path and roughly half of known post-game content
  • Give or take 4-6 hours of play

Box Boy! is a fairly clever puzzle platformer.  It has relatively simple core mechanics of spawning trails of boxes, but adds a lot of world-based mechanics to add significant depth to the core gameplay loop.  I’ve seen 22 worlds of 6-8 levels, plus another couple of sets of time attack and score attack levels, so there’s a lot of content to be had.  Though there feels like a lot of fluff content early on, the game overall was easily worth playing, and for its current $5 price has a lot of value.

What I Like

The core gameplay is extremely simple.  The main character can spawn a chain of boxes, limited to a different max per-level, which can then be used to traverse puzzle sections.  However, this is expanded upon with significant in-world mechanics.  These can range from things directly related to the character, such as using box patterns to pull the character through the world, or more direct actions like gravity manipulation, portaling (including conservation of momentum like Portal itself!), some Lemmings-inspired NPC leading, and more.  Each of the first 16 worlds introduces a new core mechanic, culminating in a story-ending world and a set of post-game worlds that combine the mechanics into the tougher puzzle set of the game.

Each world also cleverly introduces the mechanics to avoid hand-holding tutorials.  The first level of each worlds is typically a very simplified level featuring only the new mechanic for the world.  Subsequent levels then ramp up the difficulty bit  by bit.  In doing so, the player naturally learns how mechanics work without having to slog through text tutorials.

What I’m Indifferent To

Each level contains a crown or set of crowns that can be collected to earn bonus currency for purchase of in-game items.  The items include outfits for the character, hint books, background music, and some extra score and time attack levels.  However, outside of the extra levels, the rest of the items feel largely unnecessary, and don’t act as a good completionist carrot.  The main benefit I’ve found to collecting the crowns at all is that they often require more advanced mechanics to collect, which helps for solving later content.

What I Don’t Like

Outside of the last world and post-game content, this game is incredibly easy.  The first 16 worlds are essentially teaching the various mechanics on their own, before being combined for the end-game.  Though this does lead to a deep knowledge of the individual mechanics, it feels unnecessarily long to get to the combined mechanic puzzles. Fewer levels in early worlds or earlier combination of mechanics would have benefited the progression curve, which in its shipped state feels very padded with fluff content.

Game Ramblings #1 – Thoughts on Final Fantasy Type-0


  • 15 hours
  • 3 main chapters
  • All sorts of side things
  • Handful of mission replays


What I Like

First things first, the battle system is fantastic.  It still feels distinctly Final Fantasy while being real-time.  There’s nice timing touches to allow massive damage or instant kills that encourage avoiding button spamming all the time.  Dodging also feels extremely good.  While I don’t necessarily like all of the characters fighting styles, there’s enough variety that I can pretty much guarantee that one of my three active members is someone I enjoy controlling in a fight.

Somewhat related, the customization of ability sets on characters is also a nice touch.  It avoids some of the general issues of having pages of abilities being unused, and forces some strategy in how your party is setup in terms of who has healing magic, who is focused on damage, etc.  As an extension, having the magic abilities be upgradeable through items acquired during battles is a nice way to allow for some amount of micromanagement in your team.

Being able to replay story missions from the title menu is also a nice touch.  Experience and items gained also apply to the story progress, so this is both a good completionist/leaderboardy feature, as well as a convenient way to gain some levels.

Also, as is common for Final Fantasy games, the soundtrack is particularly enjoyable.

What I’m Indifferent To

The story is fairly normal Final Fantasy material, but it’s not what I would consider a good or bad story.  It just kind of exists, and so far hasn’t been more than adequate.  It’s not the worst FF story ever, but I wouldn’t put it up there with the best of them.  It is extremely clear that this was originally within the FF XIII universe though with all the l’Cie bits in the core of the story.

I’m also fairly indifferent to the side questing.  A large portion of the side quests are basically retrieval quests, and I’ve mostly ended up using them as ways to level up underleveled characters.

What I Don’t Like

The interaction of the side questing and a time limiting mechanic is…slightly annoying.  The main issue here is that I can’t queue multiple side quests.  I can queue one, complete, queue another, etc.  While ones that are purely collection can be done effectively at the same time, there are some that require multiple trips out of the main city (Ex: Quest: Kill 15 troops, Quest: Capture 3 troops) that are only tracked while active and require me to leave the main city twice.  Under normal circumstances this would only be slow, but the game requires 6 hours of in-world time to leave the city, and there’s a cap before being forced into the next story mission, which wipes out any remaining side quests in that chapter.  For me this is solvable with either multiple quest queuing or removal of the time limit, both of which feel like largely unnecessary features.


We’ll see how this ends up, but so far Type-0 feels like a game worth recommending.  It’s still very distinctly a Final Fantasy game, but has some interesting ideas with the battle system to feel like its own thing.



Going to be using this for ramblings.  Yes I’m lazy and using a stock WordPress theme.  That’s how I roll.