July 6, 2022

Pinstripe – Xbox One Review

On a normal Monday evening scrolling through the new releases, as most gamers do when they have a few minutes to pass, I found myself breathing a sigh as nothing caught my eye, but then there it was – something that stood out from the list. It was a game called Pinstripe, “ohhh” I immediately thought as I read through the description. Before I knew it the game was in my possession and it was time to power up the Xbox, get in my favourite seat and see why I couldn’t let this one pass me by.

As the game begins you find yourself on a jolly little train journey with your daughter. With fun and games aplenty, it’s about this point where the frivolities end. A sinister looking fellow takes your beloved offspring away from you, now it’s up to you to get her back. You’re transported to a different world where things look like normal but aren’t, it’s a dark place where everyone knows of the guy that took your daughter – he goes by the name of Pinstripe.

So how do we get your daughter back in this dire situation? By traversing this strange land and solving simplistically difficult puzzles and challenges of course. You find yourself in an intriguing 2-D platformer environment that is a treat to the eyes. It’s easy to see how much effort has been put into this right off the bat. It’s like a dark and edgy fairytale world, it sucks you and engrosses you before you can even say “Happy Ever After”. As you wander around this strange world you’ll also meet a few faces along the way, some are helpful while some are not, but be sure to talk to them all as the nuggets of information they have will help you on your journey. You’ll bump into these guys quite often and you’ll quickly realise the good from the bad. Without giving too much away, the gentle old couple are my favourites by far.

As you progress further into the game, you will travel to different areas. Each one is home to a specific goal or task that must be completed. I am quite a fan of this type of game compared to blitzing through a title as quick as you can, in Pinstripe you need to revisit areas you have already been to. It is beautifully worked into this game getting the balance just right so it doesn’t feel like a chore. It actually feels quite successful finding that certain piece you need from somewhere you’ve been – on the other hand, it also makes you swear and call yourself stupid if we’re being completely honest. As for the puzzles, you’ll find a wide range of different types, from code cracking and spot the difference all the way to a shooting range and a flappy-bird type challenge – the order in which they appear breaks up the monotony and keeps you on your toes.  The premise of the game is a tried and tested success, solve the puzzle to progress – some are easy and some are not.

At the end you face the dreaded Pinstripe himself, I won’t say what happens as I don’t want to be that guy that gives the spoilers out in a troll style fashion. All I will say is when you complete the game, you are treated to a beautiful and delightful ending. This sums up one of the key factors implemented throughout the game, this being emotions. You’ll have a real roller coaster ride of highs and lows as you play, and this is what makes Pinstripe really standout in a huge market, a digital tip of my hat to the team for this.

There’s a lot of high praise so far but there are only a few tiny bits that stop this from being perfect. The aiming mechanic seemed a little difficult to start with, I quickly got to grips with it but it could be slightly smoother. The only other flaw is the time it takes to complete, it seems rather short but this could be as I enjoyed it so much I could play it for hours – maybe it’s me and my greed. But you can play through again and I highly recommend you do, there’s areas and equipment that can’t be accessed on the first playthrough, so to get the full enjoyment fire it up again and take in all the new stuff on offer.

Now it’s at this point I write something smart and witty about the game to summarise, but not this time. Pinstripe is a game you just simply need to have – trust me when I say you will enjoy your time spent playing this. I’m glad that I stumbled across this way back on that Monday evening, and I’m happy to say this is 100% in my personal top ten games of all time.

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ABG's Verdict
  • 9/10
    Overall - 9/10
9/10

Summary

A solid story with puzzle genre, the game sucks you in as you need to get Bo back from Pinstripe. It turns into a game where you say I will do this bit then come off for a while. That becomes several hours later.

A Very nice indie title and worth a look at.

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