Macbat 64 – Journey of a Nice Chap is a 3D platformer by Marcus Horn, with visual aesthetics similar to games released in the 90s for the Nintendo 64, starring a small and cute bat going on an adventure with an old pirate parrot!
Released: 3rd July 2015
The source of all the water in the Kiwibbean, the Watery Factory, has gone dry! The only way to get the factory to work again is to find its six keys, scattered all over the land. At the same time, the evil Melon King (from the previous game Kiwi 64) has coincidentally appeared in the land, and he seems to be up to something no good!
The only abilities you have in Macbat 64 are moving around and flapping his wings for flight until he gets tired. The bulk of the game consists of collecting and interacting with various objects and helping various cute critters in their daily lives. For example, you can collect coins to buy the latest and greatest Game Boss game for a pal, or pop scary ghost balloons!
There are very few enemies in the game and even getting hit by them merely teleports you back to the starting area, meaning the game is relaxing to play with little to no frustrating elements. The tasks you get from the critter usually involve finding specific items or coins, the occasional easy puzzle, using a blowgun to pop some items, and even playing arcade games. On some levels, the game will switch to a 2D platformer and even a racing minigame.
Macbat 64 is a succinct game with few and small levels, which you can beat entirely in roughly one hour, although if you’re a completionist, you might take another hour to play the four bonus levels, find the game’s four secret golden artifacts and even gain access to hidden easter eggs! However, be warned that the first two bonus levels are horror-themed especially the second one, so you might want to steer clear if you don’t like the genre.
Artstyle and Audio
Macbat 64’s artstyle perfectly emulates the low poly titles of Nintendo 64 games, by not using textures for models and instead using solid colors. Textures are used for some environmental props, which also recreates the contrasting mix of sharp models with blurry backgrounds common in games of the era. Overall, the charming graphics evoke feelings of nostalgia towards the humble beginnings of the 3D era, back before complex visual innovations like lighting were a thing. Also, the game does have a forced 4:3 aspect ratio, even if you select 1920×1080 in the options window.
The soundtrack by Jay Moser also has a jolly adventure feeling to it whilst conveying the surrounding environments. For example, the Birdy Beach level has an easygoing tune that befits a vacation, while Tubular City has a vaporwave-style track that takes you right back to the 80s. The game also includes occasional British voice acting, in the intro scene and for one of the critters, but unfortunately, it doesn’t cover the whole game, not even during the ending.
Macbat 64 is a nice pick if you’re looking for an easy and wholesome experience and a homage to the 90s. Even though the game is short, I believe it’s worth the low asking price due to its brisk pace and the diverse range of environments you can visit!