PC/Mac/Linux
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Game Info:

Tick Tock Bang Bang
Developed By: Dejobaan Games, LLC
Published By: Dejobaan Games, LLC
Released: June 9, 2016
Available On: Windows
Genre: First-Person Shooter
ESRB Rating: N/A
Number of Players: 1
Price: $9.99
(Humble Store Link)

Thank you Dejobaan Games, LLC for sending us this game to review!

Superpowers are a bit like playing the lottery. Sometimes, exposure to intergalactic radiation lets you make indestructible force fields and turn invisible. Sometimes, you’re born with a gene that lets you shoot lasers from your eyes. Sometimes, the best you can get is making time slow to a crawl while you’re standing still. If you belong to the latter group, know that you can still make a killing in the movie industry.

Tick Tock Bang Bang puts you in the shoes of renowned stuntwoman Delta T, who can manipulate the flow of time while she stands still. To finish filming Tick Tock Bang Bang, the movie based on the true story of the Boston Sky Robot Uprising of 2032, she’ll have to utilize her powers to dodge runaway cars, flaming projectiles, and exploding mannequins. Luckily for her, getting hit in the face with a garbage truck only ruins the shot, not her bones.

The game is split into fifty-one decently diverse levels, ranging in time from a few seconds to around two minutes at most. In essence, Tick Tock Bang Bang is a series of obstacle courses revolving around dodging and/or destroying a number of different robotic attackers. Your goal is to complete the objective, usually either reaching a spot in the level or destroying a number of robots, in as little time as possible. Getting hit by a car or robot attack sends you back to the start to try again. The main mechanic revolves around standing still to slow time, aiding in your predictive movements. If this sounds familiar, it's no fluke - SUPERHOT was a major influence on the creation of Tick Tock Bang Bang, and its robot even makes an appearance about midway through the game.

Tick Tock Bang Bang
Highlights:

Strong Points: Stylish action; absurdly multifaceted level and robot creator
Weak Points: Clunky gameplay; no music outside the title screen; small, inactive community
Moral Warnings: Shooting robot drones, a few humanoid

As the levels and robots get more complex, so too do your tools. You start with nothing but your natural time-slowing abilities, but you soon gain a futuristic gun – though you’ll have to scavenge for ammunition from the world or busted bots to use more than an extremely short burst of lightning. Other pickups, including black hole generators and EMP bursts, are rare but vital – and usually a blast to use. It’s a good thing, too: by the end of the game, you’ll be up against some seriously gigantic robots, capable of spewing missiles and lasers all over the map.

Tick Tock Bang Bang controls well enough, with standard WASD movement, jumping with the spacebar, and the comically useless “gargle” command on G. Jumping can be a bit off, however: you’ll have to leap what seems like well in advance of the ledge, or you’ll just fall. The time-slowing mechanic is activated simply by not moving, but this can conflict with situations that require some waiting around; you’ll have to jiggle around back and forth to keep time moving if you don’t want to spend the next half-hour waiting for a laser to pass by. There’s also a hefty delay between your shots, so prepare for more jazzercising if you want to deal with more than one robot at a time.

While the base levels will likely only take you an hour and a half to get through, the real meat of the game comes in its Steam Workshop integration. Once you’re done trying to set the best times versus the online leaderboard in the main game, you can turn your creative prowess on making your own levels and titans. These editors are ridiculously detailed, with tons of options for everything imaginable – including stage props and robot weapons that aren’t found in the story mode at all. It’s also free to publish, letting the rest of the community, however small it currently is, tackle your challenge. While there aren’t too many community creations – maybe twenty of each – what is there is generally great, including robots resembling Mothra and Mr. Potato Head. If you’re not the creative type, though, there will be little to keep your interest after finishing the main and user-created levels.

Tick Tock Bang Bang
Score Breakdown:
Higher is better
(10/10 is perfect)

Game Score - 74%
Gameplay - 14/20
Graphics - 9/10
Sound - 5/10
Stability - 5/5
Controls - 4/5

Morality Score - 96%
Violence - 8/10
Language - 10/10
Sexual Content - 10/10
Occult/Supernatural - 10/10
Cultural/Moral/Ethical - 10/10

The game as a whole is visually interesting, but aurally dull. Most of the levels take cues from Mirror’s Edge: lots of bright, primary colors against a plethora of white. The bots are finely detailed, and those that animate do so smoothly. The various attacks are bright and obvious, and the game runs fine even with lots of incoming fire – though if you create a titan with hundreds of lasers and energy saw blades shooting everywhere, your computer will gain its own time-slowing powers. There is, however, not much to be said about the music – mostly because there’s not much music to talk about. You get a dubstep-type track when you first boot up the title screen, a second in the credits, and some generic club music included in the level creator; that’s all. No music plays at any point in-game. The sound effects are convincing, and the small amount of voiceovers from Delta T and the director are generally high in quality, but it’s all a little empty with no background music to go with it.

Despite the potentially intimidating title, Tick Tock Bang Bang has no real moral problems. It is an FPS, but you’ll only turn your sights on mindless robots. There are a few humanoid ones, looking like segmented mannequins, who act as suicide bombers. There’s also a “martini” prop in the stage creator that serves as an event trigger, but this is found nowhere in the main game and only in a few custom stages.

Altogether, Tick Tock Bang Bang is an enjoyable romp with varying longevity. If you’re the sort of person that enjoys creation, then the two editors and Steam Workshop integration will be right up your alley – though, with the small player count, the amount of people seeing your work might be on the low end. For the rest, it stands as a neat, if short, experience that might be worth a look or two when a sale crops up. Just remember that any resemblance to other games, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

-Cadogan

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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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