Catherine Woolley


One Hundred and Eighty Three: A weekend with Costume Quest

Costume Quest came out quite a while ago, last year in fact and after playing it the day of release I loved it to pieces. Plus it was a great game to come out alongside my Birthday, along with a few other interesting retail releases. Even after coming out so long ago I only just got round to 100% completing it along with the DLC Grubbins on Ice.

Costume Quest is the first digitally downloadable child of Double Fine productions. Their last big games were of course Psychonauts and Brutal Legend, and since being introduced to the annoying (Jack Black) yet lovable Eddie Riggs it all went a bit quiet. Then all of a sudden they had downloadable arcade titles flying out their ears. Costume Quest was first with its DLC and then Stacking with more DLC. Their newest game is Trenched if we ever get it in the UK and Europe, whereas its already out in America and has been for some time now.

So now you know who Double Fine are, in case somehow you didn't know, now Costume Quest isn't your standard game, however the gameplay featured in the game can of course be liked to other titles out there.

With an exciting and different premise to your average game it was set to do well in the niche market and with Double Fine fans, although perhaps not to everyone. Of course when you choose something so niche you won't appeal to the shooter and racing fans. However it's always dependant on taste when you throughout a new IP.

Set within the Halloween season, Wren and her twin brother Reynold were heading out to do their Halloween night trick or treating. Then dependant on which character you chose at the start (from some awesome finger pointing from your mother) your brother/sister is then dressed up as a piece of candy corn. Causing them to get mistaken for a giant piece of candy, so they get taken by a Grubbin.

The game then focuses on you saving your twin as well as saving the town of Auburn Pines from the impending Grubbin takeover, while also helping out other kids and stocking up on candy and finding components to make costumes.

The brilliance of Costume Quest which can be guessed from the title is the variety of costumes for the player to unlock. You start off with a simple Robot costume which has the added function of "heelies" allowing you to glide around much quicker than usual in the exploration side of the game. Each unique costume also has its own abilities for within the battles in the game. Each time you enter battle you're transformed from a simple child's Halloween costume into something more fantastical. So from being a cardboard robot you turn into a Gundam style mech. Some costumes are more heroic in style and some are the complete opposite and don a more sinister look. Like the fries below.

The main game is made up of two key elements, exploring with puzzle solving and fighting in an RPG style ATB bar experience. Sadly the fights by the end of the game get fairly tedious, although the need for strategy and selective picking of costumes and Battle Stamps keeps some interest while playing.

One of the other let downs is the lack of voice over, however with such a small release and presumably a small budget, I'll let them off. Plus as it then carries on throughout their other arcade titles you find yourself not minding from the lack of speech.

I may or may not have sold you on Costume Quest, however even with its faults it was still an enjoyable 5 hour game to play, should you have a little spare time on your hands. It's available for Xbox Live Arcade and the Playstation network. So pick up the trial today to see if you enjoy it too. Plus the 250G (including the DLC) is pretty easy to get should you be a gamerscore addict or a completionist.

Click on the little boxart to the right to be taken to the Xbox website where you can purchase Costume Quest for your Xbox 360.