The dummy may never fail but he sure does get hurt a lot.
This is one of those ragdoll cannon games, of which there have been quite a few. The aim of the game tends to be the same in most, if not all, of these: shoot a projectile past various obstacles to hit a target.
Often you have to knock stuff down to clear a path, or avoid knocking stuff down in case you block the way to your goal.
Dummy Never Fails is exactly the same as most games of its ilk but it does excel in the sheer scope of unlockables, levels and achievements on offer.
You have your mission, now shoot!
The level of control you have over your cannon is adequate and you should breeze past the first few levels with ease.
Some of the obstacles in your way include moving platforms, booster pads that give your dummy a burst of speed, and the physics engine itself. All of the platform and blocks daubed in black and yellow can be moved or knocked aside by firing your dummy at them.
Larger objects are harder to move and round objects roll. In fact, a lot of the levels have a circular goal block where you have to make it roll to within range of your cannon or hit it before it falls off screen.
On this note, there are a number of levels where there are obstacles or goals actually off screen when you start. As early as level two, you have to fire your dummy out of bounds and wait for him to get flung back by an invisible booster pad. There are also levels where you have to randomly shoot to find the off screen goal, which can be annoying.
But all in all, the core gameplay is good. Now let’s talk about the unlockables.
Almost as many characters to choose from as Marvel Vs Capcom 2!
As I mentioned before, there are several achievements to unlock in this game and every one of them will give you a new skin to play with.
These tasks can range from simply completing the levels and collecting the shape icons that can be found in some levels to more obscure, hidden goals.
This allows you to customise your dummy. The funniest one is the censored dummy.
There’s another thing I haven’t talked about that differentiates this game from many others of its ilk.
Most games of this type rate you on the number of shots you fire before hitting the goal. This one instead rates you on how much pain you inflict on your dummy before finishing each level.
So if you hit the goal without touching a single obstacle, you get the best rating. If your dummies get knocked about, crushed and squished, you’re going to get a poor score.
There are problems with this system. For instance, it’s impossible to complete some levels without inflicting some pain. There’s also an annoying/funny glitch where your dummy can get stuck in the scenery. Watch that pain counter rocket up!
It does give you a score to beat in future playthroughs though, giving the game replay value, and the game keeps track of your total pain across all levels.
On a side note, you can get a skin for lowering your total pain to a certain level. I achieved this but didn’t get my skin. Bah.
I’ll take out my anger on the dummies.
There is also a level editor that you can play around with to your heart’s content but there doesn’t seem to be any way to upload them to the internet, which is an oversight.
In summary, this game is better than you might expect. Some of the levels take a genuine strategy and you can’t solve them all in the same way. If you’re a fan of this genre, this will probably be your new favourite.
Don’t fail to check it out: Dummy Never Fails
Written by: Richard Wilson
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