The Average Gamer
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Putty Squad Hands-On Preview

Putty Squad Zone 3
A new Putty Squad is coming to consoles later this year from British publishers System 3. It’s a “reimagining” of the original Putty Squad, meaning totally new graphics, overhauled controls to suit whichever platform you’re playing on but the same complex gameplay that fans of the 1992 original will enjoy.

Controlling your blue character, Putty, you’ll be stretching, squashing, jumping and bouncing him around the levels in search of your missing squad of red “putties”.

As you might expect, Putty is a malleable sort of character. He’ll happily bobble along, rolling across the screen, and stretching across gaps to reach distant platforms, climb ladders or otherwise manoeuvre his way around the maps. You can inflate him to grab floating stars, lie flat to avoid incoming missiles and form fists to punch his way through enemies.

It’s a much more nuanced game than you’d think from simply looking. Over here, enemies must be dispatched with rockets. Over there, you can destroy the annoying mosquito-like floaters if you hit them on the side, but with perfect timing you can keep jumping on them from above and get a free (albeit precarious) ride across the map. And over in a quiet corner you’ll find a small wedge of cheese which will warp you into the closed area of the map hiding that last red putty.

Cheese teleports? Yeah. I don’t know either.

Putty has access to a host of weapons and items – nitro for the better-armoured enemies, a small rocket pod, a disguise so other creatures don’t recognise you, spring-loaded platforms to reach higher levels and more. You’ll also find items hidden in blocks around the map.

Each level is time-limited so there’s a lot to do. Rescue your red putties, gather stars to power up your attacks and kill things to gain valuable extra seconds. It’ll certainly keep you busy. In the level I played, I found dozens of ways to proceed thanks to the range of items and skills that Putty gains. Punching incoming rockets is immensely satisfying but requires precision timing.

Here’s a gameplay video:

Challenge mode gives you lots of replayability. For example, you must pass a certain score iwthin the time limit, complete it without losing any lives, or don’t use any food to boost your energy. Complete all the challenges and you gain a virtual sticker for your book.

putty-squad-zone07aThe game will launch with plenty of maps and every 2 weeks, System 3 will be releasing a new level. This will be completely free for people who’ve earned enough in-game stickers, or you can buy each one for a small few. Seems like a pretty good trade-off to me.

Putty Squad will be coming to PS3, PS Vita, PSP, Xbox 360, PC, 3DS and Wii U this summer.

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