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Space Bear Review

Official Score

Overall - 70%

70%

The quirky humor and text-based gameplay of Space Bear won’t appeal to everyone, but those looking for something out of the ordinary will have a bear-y good time with this one.

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Ever wanted to save the day as a bear? Damon Smith turns this dream into a reality with his new typing adventure Space Bear. Featuring text-based gameplay and a choose-your-own-adventure style, does it make for a bear-y good time?

Space Bear Review

After the Void Moles destroy the city of New Hamsterdam, the Prbear-sident sends our protagonist (who is also a bear) to the planet Tara to negotiate with their leader General Vaarg. However, he is not alone – he possesses the TFY-738 (or Taffy) suit, which serves as the narrator of the title.

If this sounds like a silly premise, that’s because it is. Space Bear has its tongue firmly planted in its cheek, dishing out jokes a mile a minute. Though this adventure deals with war, conspiracies, and betrayal, there are just as many moments where the merits of Sandra Bullock are discussed. The humor present here certainly isn’t for everyone, but those with a taste for bizarre works like Invader Zim or Aqua Teen Hunger Force will have a grand old time.

To move things along in this title, players will utilize their handy dandy keyboard. Taffy gives players a handful of options at any given turn, and it’s up to players to type out whichever option they’d like. Some responses go on for a while, but with the power of predictive text technology, players can type in the first letter and mash out the rest. It can often feel like busywork, but this mechanic is done well and just barely does not overstay its welcome. Just be warned that there is most certainly an illusion of choice here – most options play out the same, and there are times where the title railroads players into a specific option.

Broken up into a number of different chapters, Space Bear moves at a fast pace. One section might have players careening through a space chase, while another has players typing out words in a dance off. There is never a moment to be bored, and though the plot veers into the nonsensical more often than not, the game plays to its strengths and doubles down on the absurdity.

Just be warned that the title is a bit on the lower-resolution side. The entirety of the game features crude art that was likely made in Microsoft Paint, and movement comes across as a borderline slideshow format that makes the early episodes of South Park look like vivid pieces of art. Some may say that this was done intentionally, but it does feel somewhat cheap nonetheless.

The entirety of the game can be finished in around an hour, though there are some additional achievements to be had for those looking for it. The story is the same each playthrough, so don’t expect much replayability beyond the original run.

The quirky humor and text-based gameplay of Space Bear won’t appeal to everyone, but those looking for something out of the ordinary will have a bear-y good time with this one.

This review of Space Bear was done on the PC. The game was freely downloaded.
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Casey Scheld

Drawn to the underground side of gaming, Casey helps the lesser known heroes of video games. If you’ve never heard of it, he’s mastered it.
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