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Game Info:

Runner3
Developed by: Choice Provisions
Published by: Choice Provisions
Release date: May 22, 2018
Available on: macOS, Switch, Windows
Genre: Runner platformer
Number of players: Single-player
ESRB Rating: E10+ for cartoon violence, crude humor, mild language and tobacco use
Price: $29.99
(HUmble Store Link)

Thank you Choice Provisions for sending us this game to review!

I played the original Bit.Trip Runner which was released in 2011, but I haven’t played the second runner. The graphics have improved a lot since the first game and the difficulty has been ratcheted up as well. Only consider buying this game if you don’t mind dying fifty times or more per level.

I must admit that I’ve been quite humbled playing this game. I wish that I could see how I could do with teenage reflexes but I can’t. Instead, I tried to get some kids (mine and other people’s) to play this game to see how they “enjoy” the brutal difficulty. In the small sample group, the kids only played a level or two before deciding they had enough.

Highlights:

Strong Points: Colorful visuals and funny humor; voice acting by Charles Martinet
Weak Points: Infuriatingly difficult; not much content to justify the $30 price tag
Moral Warnings: Mild language (d*mn); gross humor; cartoon violence

The concept is simple enough where you have to collect gold and/or gems while jumping/kicking over and sliding under various obstacles. Each level has one hundred gold bars to retrieve and twenty-five gems to collect if you’re up for an even tougher challenge. The gold bars and gems can be used in the in-game shop to buy accessories and customizations for your characters.

You can choose to play as CommanderVideo or CommandGirlVideo. Other video game personalities like Shovel Knight, Dave Lonuts from Whoah Dave!, PIXL’s Sadbot, and more make an appearance as well. CommandGirlVideo is pretty curvy, but you can’t see too much since she’s all the same color. Some plumber crack is shown later in the game though.

In total, there are three differently themed worlds with ten mandatory levels in each. Optional levels are available, but they are brutally difficult. Bosses must also be defeated to move onto the other worlds.

Runner3
Score Breakdown:
Higher is better
(10/10 is perfect)

Game Score - 78%
Gameplay - 13/20
Graphics - 8/10
Sound - 8/10
Stability - 5/5
Controls - 5/5

Morality Score - 84%
Violence - 8/10
Language - 7/10
Sexual Content - 8.5/10
Occult/Supernatural - 10/10
Cultural/Moral/Ethical - 8.5/10

Given the difficulty of the first few levels, I doubt many impatient younger or reflex-challenged older games will move on past the food world. While each level has a checkpoint in it, making it to the said checkpoint will take many attempts. Skipping the checkpoints are possible but you have to be a glutton for punishment to do so.

If you’re good at this game the three worlds and thirty levels won’t keep you busy for too long. The witty humor, pretty visuals and vehicles add to the appeal, but the difficulty is only for the most determined gamers.

The music is good and I like how it gets more complex with each boom box collected in the levels. The boom boxes speed up the character and gives them the rainbow trail if they are all collected. Charles Martinet is the voice actor for the narrator and he’s most famous as the voice of Nintendo’s Mario. There is some minor language (d*mn).

Despite Runner3’s charm, I only recommend picking this title up on sale due to its extreme difficulty. Even if you are good at this game, you probably won’t get $30 worth of entertainment. If you’ve done well with the other games in the series, Runner 3 is worth looking to.

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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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