0 Degrees is made entirely for the cheap and cheerful sector of gaming, perhaps with the retro gamers niche in mind. There’s nothing wrong with that as a good game can still be made that is short, simple, concise and well made. 0 Degrees follows this route nicely to make a game that is pleasant to play but won’t change your life.
Across 40 levels you’ll traverse single screen platform puzzles. You have to get to the exit portal in each level and many of which require you to collect a crystal on the way to open it. Aside from the run and jump of the opening two or three levels, 0 Degrees gives you five blocks to throw about to build your path. Once they are laid you don’t get them back and whilst you can push them, you can’t pick them up.
Each level revolves around the placement of these blocks. Build a stepping stone over spikes, throw it at or onto to switch to activate it, build a wobbly tower to scale a wall and so on. Late in the game, you are also given the ability to freeze the blocks in the air too. This allows you to traverse giant gaps so long as you can aim for a ceiling to stop the block from flying off the screen. It takes a while to get used to the block mechanics as you move a cursor around as an aim. The block flies full pelt towards the cursor and often you’ll clip a wall and the block will drop instantly. On the flipside, your character can sometimes cheese jumps and sprite bump over the edge of a cliff. For each cheesy gain, there are two cheesy losses though as a small bump may send your character to his death. Thankfully respawns are nigh on instantaneous.
The main issue with 0 Degrees is less about what is here – as it works nicely – it’s that the challenge is simple and short. I completed the game in 75 minutes and about half of that runtime was on the last six levels. When the ice freezing mechanic is introduced, it could have taken the game into really deep territory with another 20 levels of complex and tricky time-based puzzles ala portal. Instead, it shows the mechanic and gives you a few levels right at the end with it and then it just… ends. There is also a lack of sound throughout too.
Retro fans will get the most out of 0 Degrees and this is a game I’d recommend on a deep sale. Nice enough for a brief bit of leisurely platforming and block placement puzzles but if you ask me about this in 2 years time, I’d probably have forgotten all about it.
Review code provided by publisher.
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