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It's a very silly game indeed but there's a sweetness at its centre that would put even the finest fondant to shame. Through all the raised eyebrows, ill-fitting costumes and fluffed lines, Roundabout has a sincerity that makes me happy to recommend it to anyone, even if it did fool me into playing a puzzle game.
If by chance you actually have an aversion to FMV and B-movie stupidity, I'd be surprised if you come away from Roudabout with anything but a confused look on your face, wondering what you just witnessed and why I'm raving about it. To that, I say, phooey on you!
The two-man dev team at No Goblin created the most original, the most unique and the most crazy absurd thing I have seen in video game history – and it’s amazing. In the first few minutes of gameplay I was Georgio, the driver of a spinning limousine, en route to picking up customers with crazy missions. This limousine spins while you dodge traffic, hit a few pedestrians, and avoid other objects.
Wacky is the word which first comes to mind when reading about Roundabout, and it's the lasting impression players will have even after they've stopped spinning. The mechanic of driving a limo which never quits revolving is utter nonsense but is actually a tremendously fun gameplay challenge.
If you're a fan of absurd humor, fast-paced challenging gameplay and seeing Eric Pope in a farmer outfit, then Roundabout should be the next game you purchase. It may aim to feel like a B-movie, but Roundabout is a blockbuster in terms of fun.
Roundabout is simply overflowing with personality, offering the best bad acting around and clever missions that even make the aggravating city exploration worth plodding through.
A surprise out of left field, No Goblin's Roundabout could've easily fallen apart over the shoddy build of its concept. But the team exceeds expectations with a game that firmly plants tongue-in-cheek, asking us to forget about the casualties on the road in favor of effectively getting our customers where they need to go. It's silly, stupid – and good fun while it lasts.
While those complaints are niggling to perfectionists, it's not the takeaway here. What's remarkable is that No Goblin took what had all the makings of a gimmick mechanic and turned it into something that feels like a legitimately useful staple, something that requires patience and skill to figure out. Roundabout manages to be simultaneously cumbersome and stiff, and brilliant and endearing -- chances are you'll go 'round and 'round. Actually, that's precisely what you'll do.
When the credits rolled I was relieved. The final part of Roundabout was agony, a funny game that had overstayed its welcome and told all its jokes four times over.
Roundabout would probably work better as a PlayStation Vita game, which you could jump into for five minutes while you're riding the tube, bus, or a perpetually rotating limousine. Fortunately, the game was announced for the handheld last year, so hopefully that version still comes to fruition. On the PlayStation 4, there's definitely still fun to be found in this highly stylised game, but the novelty soon wears off if you play it in long bursts.
On the same note getting the best experience out of Roundabout is exactly the same as getting a good mouthful of popcorn. Dipping your hand deep into the bag doesn't always lead to something great. Taking a handful from the top of its exposed delights is without a doubt the best way to enjoy yourself in a game which delights trying – and often succeeding – in drawing a big smile across your face.
Roundabout is a weird game. I found myself struggling to play it at times, but always willing to go back. The cut scenes are truly worth the price of admission, but the game play left me a bit cold at times.