60 Seconds! Review
Reviewed on Sony PlayStation 4Also available on Microsoft Xbox One, PC, Android, iOS and Nintendo Switch
I have played many post-nuclear survival games but I have never, ever played one like 60 Seconds before. I had not heard of it prior to this review but after watching the trailer before I started playing, the game certainly had something different that I wanted to poke around in and experiment with.
60 Seconds is a game split into two parts. The first part sees you running around like a lunatic for 60 seconds in a randomly generated house. Your goal is to take as much stuff as you can into your nuclear shelter under your abode before the nuke strikes.
The key thing here is that not all things found in your house are created equal, should you take family members? Water? Weapons? Food? They are all valid answers and you never know how the second part of this title will play out but that is what the game is all about. You need to maximise this 60 seconds and get whatever you can to survive below.
The second part of 60 Seconds plays out like a visual novel. You live out your life in the shelter, using the items you grabbed in the prior section to last as long as you can. You must face random events, disease, visitors and a whole plethora of life-ending variables. You never know what you will face but you must use the items you have to hand.
You can gain more items like food, water or tools by sending members of your shelter out on expeditions. They may come back with food or water but it is always a calculated risk as there are hazards everywhere. You need to judge it day by day and your family can only go out if they are of sound body and mind.
Keeping everyone sane is a fragile task. They need to be fed, watered, entertained and kept healthy. When you are constantly bombarded with possible chances for extra rations or water, every decision you make can have unknown consequences and adversely affect your families welfare. The second part of 60 Seconds feels like one big balancing act.
While I quite enjoyed most of my time with 60 Seconds, the nuclear survival mechanics and repetitive gameplay soon started to grate on me. It's by no means a bad game but not something I can play for hours and hours. It is perhaps something you should play in short bursts to try and negate the game's repetitiveness.
I also found the controls a bit unresponsive at times. Whether it was collecting items in the scavenging part of the game or selecting items in the survival part, sometimes the button presses seemed to lag a little. This sometimes made parts of the game a bit frustrating. Not overly annoying but just enough to be noticeable.
Graphically, while I liked the hand-drawn style, the overall presentation of 60 Seconds was a bit lacking. The survival part, while being nicely drawn had very minimal animation. The scavenging part, which had some animations, felt a bit void of life. Why is everyone so calm when a nuclear catastrophe is on the horizon?
The sound design is equally uneventful. Monotonous music and sound effects make the repetitive nature of the game stand tall and proud. Unfortunately, the games entire presentation feels like a free to play or mobile game and does not feel like something I would boot up my PlayStation 4 to play.