I’m moving cities this week so I didn’t have time to really get into something meaty for Vendreditch this week. So I sampled some short stuff from the one button game jam to still get a little recommendation in this week.
I found with a lot of the games in the jam that these one-button games that there’s a huge focus on that exact moment of the press. This is understandable, and I wouldn’t call it a problem. But this results in a feeling that the game is either doing nothing or playing itself at all the other times. The jam has an entry centered around slapping crash test dummies, and that one suffers from being either you jamming the button or waiting for animations to play out. The jam has a dice rolling strategy game where you’re either on your turn or waiting for the computer to play out there’s.
What sets Gravity Volley apart from the other games in the jam is that you’re always engaged in play even when you’re not actively pressing the button. The game is kind of a cooperative pong where you have to ensure that the rally continues as long as possible. In this game both paddles rotate around a single spot of strong gravity that the ball is pulled towards. This odd gravity pulls the balls in huge sweeping arcs that the player has to track and anticipate.
Gravity Volley works because the player is engaged every second of play. The irregular gravity takes some attention to keep track of meaning the player “plays” the game even when they aren’t actively pressing the button. It’s a simple game but it works as a fulfilling little game that you might end up really enjoying. The developer NickLong sure has a great sense of how to stretch the one-button limitation into a workable mechanic.