German developer Cookie Engine is working on their first title, GunBlocks. It’s a turn-based tactical sidescrolling platformer in which the player must modify the environment by placing tetrominoes every round. It’s also funny and adorable.
The demo has an introductory story scene in which the pilot of the spaceship the player is on has a fit and leaves the cockpit to his pet pig. Naturally, this doesn’t work out so well; the ship is forced to land and the player is sent out to retrieve a dropped repair kit with which to fix the hull.
Once outside the ship, the player is given instructions on how to play. Each round has three phases. In the first phase, the player must use all of the blocks in their inventory. Most of these are tetrominoes, though some are defensive and offensive powerups. The tetrominoes can be used to do things like patch holes in the ground and raise the player, enemies, and/or items up. Phase two has the player taking aim and firing a bullet, which can target an enemy or the ground. Destroying the ground can make it possible for the player, who can only go up one level at a time, to pass a tall spot and also creates an extra tetromino for the player to pick up, which will be added to the free one they get at the beginning of the next round. In the third and final phase, the player moves forward four steps. Or tries to, if there’s a wall in front of the player that is too tall to climb. With every step taken or attempted, the screen moves forward. The player must avoid being pushed offscreen.
So much about the game is wacky in a good way, from the jokes to the fact that a dropped tetromino immediately grows grass so it can blend into the landscape. The graphics and characters are fun and the music is pleasant. It all ties together very well, and although there’s no solid information available about when, where, or for how much GunBlocks will be available, this demo makes it easy to look forward to eventually being able to get it.