Double Fine has given us some great games such as Brutal Legend and Costume Quest, now they bring us Stacking. There is one word that describes Stacking, it’s “fantastic!”. The creative and innovative concept of the game by using Matryoshka dolls (aka babushka dolls) and great gameplay, makes it one of the best titles to hit the Xbox Marketplace this year! Stacking is a mix of puzzle and adventure. Playing Stacking is a pleasure from start to finish.
It’s the 1930’s and Charlie Blackmore’s father, a chimney cleaner finally gets a job to bring food to the table. He then vanishes without a trace, without money to pay for his debts the evil Baron takes away Charlie’s brothers and sisters to work off the debt. Charlie is left behind as he is too small to work and think that a runt like him will be useless. They are in for a surprise!
Now it’s up to Charlie to reunite his family, he possesses a rare and unique ability to influence the actions of other dolls by Stacking on them. This ability will be the key to solve the puzzles and save not only his family but lots of children in slavery under the evil and ruthless Baron’s wrath.
The way you advance in the story is by using Charlie ability to stack into the other dolls and make use, of their different and sometimes quite peculiar abilities; from seducing other dolls, blowing gum, fixing stuff, playing drums, flying with balloons or even farting on other dolls to solve a puzzle.
Puzzles have more than one way to be solved, you can find clues by talking to other dolls and by paying attention to the cut scenes.
The way how the story is presented, as a silent film is just wonderful, and it fits so nice with the style of the game. You can really feel the atmosphere of the 1930’s.
If I have a complaint its that the story is short. The game is very entertaining and you want to play until the end. If you decide to advance in the story without taking the time to find all the possible solutions to the challenges the game offers, it feels extremely short.
But the true charm of this title lies not in how fast you finish the game but in talking with the characters, unlocking all Hi-Jinks, completing the collection of dolls and spending time discovering the different ways to complete the challenges and puzzles. That is what makes this game truly enjoyable.
In your adventures you will meet a hobo named Levi. In your secret base he will build replicas of the dolls and paint murals of your various adventures. In there you can see your achievements, rewards and what’s missing in your collection.
Stacking is a truly original game. Cinematics present the story in a unique and entertaining way. The Music is nice and gameplay mechanics are good too, aside from the short story that leaves you saying “i want more!” It is hard to find something bad about the game.
Stacking was a pleasant and relaxing experience from start to finish. I cant wait to see what Double Fine have for us next, whatever it is, i’m sure it will be something with the quality of Stacking and the rest of their games.
Definitely this is a game you have to try! Wandering around playing with the many doll abilities, finding all the unlockables. It’s entertaining and rewarding, a game you can’t miss in your collection. Available for 1200 Microsoft Points in the Xbox Live Marketplace. The game is also available free, for the month of february for Playstation Plus Members.
In the end it doesn’t matter which console you choose to play Stacking, you’ll have lots of fun!
We give the game a 9 out of 10!