#IDARB is #fun

By Austin Miller | @AMiller_DE | Daily Egyptian

It all started with a red box.

Developer Other Ocean tweeted a picture of red box and asked the people of the Internet what they wanted to see the box become.

Some people asked for the game to have a ball. Some asked for robots. Some sick individuals asked for clowns. With all of these random responses, it is hard to believe the game did not turn into a dumpster fire.

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Instead, “#IDARB” (It Draws a Red Box) is unique and original, resembling an 8-bit game from 20 years ago.

“#IDARB” is a 2D, platformer sports game. Imagine “NBA Jam” with “Super Mario”-esque platforms between half-court and the hoops. Players must collect the ball, jump across the stages and throw the ball into the goal. As simple as that sounds, “#IDARB” is hectic, heated and just plain hard.

Gamers must pass the ball to their teammates to put together a multiplier that will make one goal worth more than a single point. A goal is also worth more points when lobbed from a farther distance. Putting together a strategy resulting in the most points is tough, especially when facing a defense.

Trying to get a perfect pass or shot is difficult enough, not to mention while opponents are punching and stomping on you from above. Good defense leads to more turnovers than an Arby’s counter.

Scoring a goal brings another similarity to “NBA Jam.” Instead of an announcer yelling “BOOMSHAKALAKA,” players will hear various movie quotes being screamed with excitement.

I never knew I wanted someone to yell “I drink your milkshake” from “There Will Be Blood” upon scoring a goal. But that is now a reality in this world and I do not want to go back.

The hashtag in the name may look out of place, but “#IDARB” is one of the first games to use social media in the game itself. The game creates a bond between players and Twitter and Twitch, a game streaming site. When a match begins, a hashtag is displayed in the top right corner. Spectators in the same room, or across the country via Twitch, can alter the game by using that hashtag.

An example is being able to turn the lights out in the arena of the game. Tweeting @Idarbwire with the match specific hashtag, #KGP6 for example, and #lights, will make you question if the game designers paid the electric bill.

Viewers can also make players fly around with fizz coming out of their butts using #fizz. They can also fill up the arena with water using #flood.

For a game designed with so many social interactions, it is disappointing it does not have a great option for online matchmaking.

“#IDARB” gives the best experience when playing with a group of friends. It is much more fun to beat a friend than some random, faceless person in Kentucky, unless it is the ghost of Colonel Sanders. That would be a victory worth celebrating, with fried chicken of course.

The game supports up to eight people, but they must all be on the same console. It’s great to get together and game with friends, but in 2015, people do not go to their friends’ houses every day.

An online match only allows for two friends to team up, meaning a group of people will be broken like a promise by Pinocchio.

Without the online functionality, which could be fixed, “#IDARB” is still a one-of-a-kind game. Players can customize their own characters and create custom songs for their team.

Twelve food recipes can also be unlocked from playing the game. Pumpkin bread, bacon-wrapped chicken bites and Neapolitan Rice Krispy treats add a delicious flavor to a fun game.

4 stars out of 5

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