Never Gonna Stop | Top Run Review

It’s finally here. Top Run by Katata Games is available pretty much everywhere: PlayStation, Xbox, Nintendo, Steam, and mobile. But ever since I got my copy, I’ve had Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up” stuck in my head. I can’t figure out why though.

Maybe it’s because Kevin, the protagonist of Top Run, says something similar to “I’m never gonna give you up” when you free Joy from her cell.  Or maybe it’s because I got on Fortnite and they have the Never Gonna emote where your avatar dances while the song plays. Or it could be because Valentine’s Day was a few days ago and pretty much everyone was singing it. 

But, maybe it’s because Top Run is as much of a “brain worm” as “Never Gonna Give You Up.” I just can’t stop playing the game! 

In the game, you play as Kevin as he runs endlessly to save his hometown from bad guys. 

Use my Amazon Affiliate link to buy the song for yourself. That way you can help support my blog and listen to it forever and ever and ever and…I’m not really helping my case here, am I?

I think that might be part of why I enjoy the game so much. There’s no big mystery; no having to search through the website’s code (that I know of); no messing with image brightness to see the hidden message. You just run. I don’t feel like I need some kind of masters in cryptography to understand it. In a time of shared universes and theory-hunting AR games–where everything has to have a cliffhanger, it’s nice to see one that doesn’t have all that…weight. The game does have a backstory; it tells you how Kevin got his powers and that’s all you need.

Also, the controls are simple and easy to master. It did take me a couple minutes to change over from the app controls to controller buttons; but once I figured out the button layout was basically the same as it was on the app, I was back in my groove.

I also appreciate that once I pay the purchase price, I don’t need to pay out more. The skins and upgrades are purchasable by collecting pixels. The upgrade/skin prices are also fair. I don’t feel like it takes forever to collect enough pixels to buy a skin, but the price isn’t so low that I can purchase all of them after only a few runs. They are a difficult goal to reach but not impossible.

Speaking of reachable goals, the objectives are similarly difficult yet obtainable. None of the game objectives seem that difficult–some are harder or take longer to complete than others but all seem doable. 

img_2674But enough gushing for a moment. I have noticed that some glitches have carried over from the mobile game. Sometimes the cell holding a friend will fall through the floor. Other times the cell will just be laying on its side. Coming from my own time coding programs and games, I’m sure this glitch comes from the cell’s random generation. The cell generates in an open space and falls. Even with a billion numbers to choose from, sometimes you get a one.

Another glitch is a little more comical. Sometimes the dash wears off and I end up running right into a foe, usually a Bikey Mikes; but instead of dying, we collide. Kevin and Mike run into each other and just stop. Kevin continues to run and Mike continues to ride but they aren’t going anywhere. It looks like two people going, “Get out of my way!” “No, you get out of my way!” “Why don’t you move?” “Why don’t you move?!” A couple seconds later, the game catches up and it’s Game Over.

The last error I can find is that the invincibility after a power-up wears off or when you rescue a friend can sometimes feel a little random. Sometimes, it seems to be only a second; but one time, I was able to survive a blast from a Hack like five seconds after freeing Ben.

However, for like 99.9 percent of the time, the game runs smoothly–unlike some other games that have a tendency to crash now and then.

So…I’m still not sure why I keep wanting to play Top Run over and over. It could be the simplicity. Or it could be the added perk of annoying everyone around me by playing the Beckett soundtrack endlessly.

But, I think it might because Mr. Schnitzel (the cat) has added subliminal messages within the game–why else would there be so many neon lights. It’s all part of his evil plot. Today, he gets us to buy Top Run; tomorrow…endless catnip.

Nah, I think it is because you can feel the hard work and passion of Katata Games and Fantastico Studios. 4.9/5

PS: If any TV/movie producers out there are reading this, I wouldn’t mind seeing a Top Run series (or at least a comic). Now, I’ve got catnip to buy.


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Does Whatever a Review Can|Spider-Man PS4

I finally got my copy of Marvel’s Spider-Man for the PS4. And now that I’ve been able to actually put it down…for about ten minutes, I can give you an initial review–because boy is it going to take a while to finish it. I played it for like three hours and only have 10 percent completion…but that’s probably because I keep getting distracted by all the collectables and crimes in the city.

So, let’s address the white elephant in the room first (or I could say white spider). You know the first thing people want to know about: the graphics. All I can say is, “Yes, the graphics are good.” The city looks like a city and the lighting is excellent; it looks like they somehow digitized New York and put it into the video game. (New York City is still there, isn’t it? I mean, no super-villain has come along and zapped the city into the digital world, right?)

img_2674My problem with the graphics is that the people look a little weird. It was like they were good and the developers spent time on them but they still look odd somehow. But, what I did like is how every scene so far (remember I’ve only completed 10 percent) looks lived in. Birds and helicopters share the sky with our web-swinging wonder. The inside of the buildings are just as good. The lab Peter works in has notes everywhere and machine parts scattered across the desks; it looks like a lab that has people in it.

So with graphics out of the way, let’s again address the real white spider in the room: the new costume. I was a bit ‘eh’ about it and still am, but what I do like is that you can change the costume, so you can wear the new one or the OG costume or one of the others you unlock. I like how the costumes unlock as you level up and not by finding some random code or doing a certain amount of “X” things. Also, I like how the suit powers work on any of the costumes–once you unlock that power of course. For example, with the original Spidey costume you get a power called “Web Blossom,” but you can equip that to the new suit or you can equip the new suit’s power to the original suit. (My favorite suit power so far is the one that let’s you make hologram copies of yourself.)

The suit mods also work like the suit powers. They work across all suits so you can customize your Spidey as you like.

I do have to add here that sometimes the game had weird camera and response issues. Sometimes Spidey would get stuck on an object; like when a henchman was about to hit him with a rocket, Spidey kept running forward against the railing and wouldn’t move. But for the most part, it’s been very successful.

Finally, the collectables. I really like how the collectables mean something in the game. If you find one, such as take a landmark photo, you get a token. The tokens then can be used to craft new suits, mods, and gear. I really like how this game focuses more on Peter’s science know-how. You get to see him use that mind of his and there are mini-games that involve crafting and technology. I like how they show that the Spider-Man suit is machine-like, that it isn’t just spandex that it has circuitry and technology in it.

At this time, I’d have to give Spider-Man a 4.8/5. Now if you’ll excuse me, Spidey’s got some vent crawling to do.

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