A hilariously macabre action platformer with great design and story, Orphan Feast was created by Robox Studios for Adult Swim.
You are the gruesome Creaky Tom who has been given the odious task by Oliver Twisted to snatch up children so they can be ground up into pies for greed and "culinary perversion." You must clobber or jump onto the orphans to stun them and shove them into your bag. Once the bag gets full, grab an umbrella to shoot up into the air and deposit your prey into a holding cell. Throw objects or use your cane to fight off cops, waiters, factory thugs, and watch out for the love crazed portly lady.
Once you start capturing orphans, the heavier bag can be used as a more hefty weapon. You will also run into your competition the Artful Dodger. Prepare for a tough fight when you reach his lair. Here the story takes a surprising turn and you head off through the factory and work your way up the gear works. In the last chapter you must battle your way through the swanky restaurant and kitchen, then figure out how to reach the private bakery for the big boss fight with Oliver Twisted.
Analysis: What sets this game apart from most browser platform games is the really fantastic character design and the economical yet strong story elements. The fighting keeps the action moving, and having to struggle to get the kids is a funny challenge, certainly more intriguing than coin collecting in average platformers.
Storytelling in games seems to always be in a state of growing pains, and often misses the mark. Many games rely on elaborate backstory that you have to stop and read, or long boring cut scenes to convey story. This game borrowed some storytelling techniques from animated shorts. It utilized character, set pieces, action and level design to tell the story. There was sparse exposition and the one short cut scene used mainly character expression to punctuate emotion and convey story.
Another reviewer here at JIG felt that for a platform game it was somewhat clumsy, the fighting chaotic, and the screen was too small for the size of the characters. Well, since I pretty much suck at platform games, take his word on that. But being closer to the action did achieved two things: It brought you closer in to the point of view of the character so you're more part of the action and story, and it provided an additional puzzle challenge of trying to figure out which path to take. This in effect was like being in an unrevealed maze and was especially tricky during the factory sequence.
Robox has managed to maintain the tone and design down to the last detail. The health indicator is a beating anatomical heart that shrivels, the instruction page uses teeth and bones to represent the keys you press. The character design is fantastic. If you just let the main character rest onscreen he will laugh menacingly or might grab a kid out of the bag and take a bite. He even dies funny. An excellent score also fit the period and added perfectly to the tone.
Although the theme is dark, it is handled with humor and the game never gets gory, but some background images are disturbing and are not appropriate for younger kids.
Perhaps it's just me, since I like the "grim" in Grimms' Fairy tales, but who wouldn't want to be a ghoulish Victorian pie-throwing cannibal!?? Eat em' up and