Rolling around at the speed of sound!
Proun+ is one of those games I had heard a lot about, but never really took a stab at. With its arrival on the Nintendo 3DS this week, I went through the game from start to finish for the first time. There are a lot of things to like about Joost van Dongen's solo project, though it isn't perfect marvel of a game.
The concept is perfectly sound. Proun+ can be best described as a tube racer, where you will move about 360 degrees on a preset passageway. Like others in the genre, you will have to move left and right to avoid obstacles and keep yourself in the game as long as possible. The good thing about Proun+ is that you can choose between the Circle Pad or D-Pad, so you can play it the way you prefer.
The game offers just eleven tracks. While the selection could have been a bit broader, the title offers four ways to play each track. There is Race, where you will duke it out against a bunch of computer opponents. It is the first option you will likely engage with and learn what the game is all about. Race is all about staying ahead of the curve, so not hitting obstacles is key in this one. By continuing this streak, your boost meter will be quickly filled up and you can launch yourself full steam ahead. These strategies can be used in the other modes, but it is here where you come in terms with them.
The second mode is the traditional time trial, where all that's left is you and the track. The game doesn't rank you for trying the mode sadly, which is a slight bummer. In the Points mode, you will have to pass by special billboards to gather points and get a decent score. Collecting these boards and ranking up a multiplier is really hard, but overcoming that challenge was quite satisfying I felt. Finally, there is an Endless option where you keep going until you get hit once. It was a cool way to apply all the skills I had learned and I pushed myself to get further in this particular mode.
Proun+ also has five different difficulty settings, which makes the game go faster and faster every step up. It becomes real rough in the latter options though and I could only play it for a few levels at a time. It would make me quite dizzy sometimes and having a good focus is pretty much a requirement here. In Proun+, you will also be able to compete online by posting your scores and times to the Nintendo Network. The problem is that the high score boards aren't really fully fleshed out. If you have a slower time or lesser score, you can't really see where you stand and only the ten very best will appear. I was still motivated to get better, but it would have been a really nice touch.
Graphically, the game looks somewhat simple. It is not the best what the Nintendo 3DS can handle and the backgrounds are nothing too spectacular. The obstacles that you face are quite colorful though and the 3D effect really pops in this title. The music is a weird one. I wouldn't classify the tunes as bad, but it isn't anything remarkable or truly worth remembering the game for.
Proun+ is quite a fun game, but it falls short in a few regards. The track selection could have been somewhat broader, while the leaderboards could have been bigger. There are some points to be made for the presentation, but it is quite functional and the 3D of the title is quite stellar. The tracks and modes are a blast in their own right and they offer quite a lot of variety. Proun+ is a smooth playing game with harsh challenges for whoever wants them!