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Game Maker Games - Flywrench
 Flywrench by messhof
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Review by beam
Staff Review

When I first saw the screenshots for messhof's Flywrench, I was admittedly skeptical. It looked a lot like a stylized version of those boring and poorly made flash games in which you must move your mouse to the finish of a closed obstacle course without touching any of the obstacles. In fact, it is a highly stylized version of that type of game, but don't let that change your opinion of this masterpiece.

Flywrench gets its name from the model of the ship you pilot, the flywrench. You are the pilot of flywrench 6802, and it is your mission to pass every security gate in our solar system. There are security gates on Pluto, each of the eight planets, and the sun. As you progress closer and closer to the sun, the gates get more and more difficult. I'm very impressed with messhof's work in distributing the game's difficulty, he managed to make the game get increasingly difficult and frustrating (in a good way) without resorting to levels that feel hackish or puzzles that you can only beat through luck. With enough skill and patience you'll be able to play through the whole thing in a single sitting.

Complementing the game's good level design is the excellent gameplay mechanic. messhof has come up with a control scheme that is easy to pick up, but takes time to master while still keeping the player interested.1 The controls are simple: press up to flap, hold up to drop, and down to roll. Each maneuver has a color associated with it; idle is white, flapping is alternating between white and red, dropping is red, and rolling is green. When you encounter an obstacle of the same color, do the corresponding maneuver as you pass through it. Some obstacles do not have a corresponding color, and will just have to be avoided or bounced off of.

After playing through the whole game a few times, the only thing about Flywrench that I didn't like is that there is no option to go back and play levels that you have already beaten. There is no level select screen or alternate play modes, it just has story mode. That said, Flywrench is a stellar game. All of the aspects of the game fit together perfectly. It's a permanent resident on my hard drive.

1Lost Garden's "Smashing the Game Design Atom" discusses the idea that players like to build skill under the point "Players seek mastery."

Author's Description

You need to beat the system! Pilot your flywrench on a direct course into the sun, while performing acrobatics to get around the various obstacles. Watch the trailer at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mPDfvTDIicU

Download Flywrench (EXE, ~12.4 MB , Suitable for everyone )

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Opinions about Flywrench

Overall: recommended

Recommendations: The 11 people who like Flywrench also like the following games.
Comments (Add your own):
2008.08.13 The HammerHead
Rating: 9

Say, good game. I played through it and was very impressed. Aren't games like this great - games that don't need impressive art? This game is certainly not to be quickly judged by the single color shapes, because it is one of the best Game Maker Games I've seen in a long time...
2008.04.18 jchalase
Rating: 9

beat it in ten minutes. 9 out of 10 because there is a glitch in it when you beat the entire game
2008.01.31 EagloBane
Rating: 7

The game, though short and simple in design, was actually quite well done. I had the music off for the whole game, so I can't comment on it. I will say, though, that the gameplay was fun and rather addictive. My only gripes are that it was short, didn't have enough variation, and could have used more content.
2008.01.19 flamozoid gaming
Rating: 6

The music could get a bit annoying at times, and sometimes I wouldn't consider it music... but, it is a fun game, here just some REALLY irritating things I want to point out:

The occasional FPS drop on the second earth level makes it VERY annoying to time things right, and not accidentally jump too high.

There is a glitch in the second Venus level at the start where you can fail if you use the roll at the start. (REALLY frustrated me)

The later levels are just frustrating though, and made me give up.
2008.01.19 uiop60
Rating: --

I think i might be the reason this was on here
(it was on last page and I bumped and gave it a great review.
2008.01.19 DeathMasterGames
Rating: --

In retrospect, it's better than I thought it was. I played it through once more. It's a lot easier the second time. Took a little under 15 minutes. I got a strange error relating to a 'globale.something' for a variable, but if I unzip the file again, it seems to be fine. It's a fun game, and well done, but it's still kind of short
2008.01.18 DeathMasterGames
Rating: 7

Not a bad little game. Took me around 20 minutes to beat the first time playing. Could have been a bit longer, but I'm glad it wasn't, or I might have been frustrated. It got a little annoying at parts. Games like these aren't really fun, just addicting and hard. Kind of like Jumper. Anyway, I was a little disappointed about the ending. The Sun was just the credits and nothing special happened, and it was way too easy. All in all it wasn't too bad. The sound was fitting, but I'd still prefer real music of some sort. I'd rate this game around a 6-7/10. Not amazing, but a pass, anyway.
2008.01.18 Jabberwock
Rating: --

I thought the music owned, but I guess it's not for everyone.

I think this is an excellent game, though near the end I got too frustrated and gave up. I don't prefer games that require this level of precision. This game is very good, though; quite creative and aesthetically appealing.
2008.01.15 Jtcampbell
Rating: 8

Great game, the visual style didn't turn out half bad. Very creative gameplay mechanics. The music was awful, though.
2008.01.15 virus616
Rating: 9

This is a really nice game. At first,I found the difficulty curve a little high, but then I really got into it, and beat the game.
I'm not sure why you think it doesn't have much replay value, I found myself going back and beating the game two, three times. It was kinda crazy.
I guess the only things I found annoying was how hard it was to control the ship, and how there weren't more levels to the game. But besides that, it was really fun.
2008.01.10 messhof
Rating: --

glad you liked it, beam.

also nice use of footnote.
2007.12.16 AkiraTT
Rating: --

Wow, really fun :D but a bit short I guess, anyways still great fun :)
Oh and make a multiplayer please :p
2007.12.15 elmernite
Rating: 10

Great Game! need I say more?
Fine, A download-now-and-have-lots-of-fun-on-a-very-hard-game type of game. Now play it.
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