Jasper’s Journeys – News Bulletin: Cat stealing sweeps nation! Cat Ladies crying everywhere!

Okay so it’s just one cat named Orlando, who has been stolen by a witch. Today’s review is called Jasper’s Journeys, a delightful jump’n’run platformer that hearkens back to the 16 bit era by Lexaloffle. Please be sure to click on the screenshots for their full sizes, as scaling them down doesn’t really do them justice.


You play Jasper, who’s just sitting watching his cat Orlando play, and suddenly out of the sky comes a wicked witch!  The witch steals Orlando for one of her potions, and now Jasper must rescue his beloved friend.  Controls are fairly simple, you use the arrow keys to move, z to jump, and x to throw magic discs.  You get energy by collecting fruit, and with each throw you use up your fruit, so be careful not to use all of it up.  There are 3 golden globes to collect, and treasure.  Treasure can be used to spend at inns.  Inns are places where you can save your game, or buy fruit or shields.  Even saving a game costs some gold, so be sure you have at least 10 to do so.  There are also 6 different potions to help you.


To end the level you need to get to a blue dragon.  Purple dragons take you to a special island where you can get more fruit.  Beware of monsters, there are guards, and birds who drop stones, and other various creatures that will hinder your way.  Usually they end up taking your treasure away if you’re hit.  At the very end of 3 levels there is a boss level.  Which will shoot stuff at you, and you have to learn how to defeat it, pretty much standard stuff in platform scrollers, back in the snes/genesis era.  There are also keys that unlock doors, and secret areas.


Generally this fits in very well with all the famous 16-bit platform scrollers you grew up with as a kid, such as super mario world, or sonic the hedgehog.  The graphics are really nice 8-bit color-looking graphics.  The colors aren’t weird, and it’s all very pleasant to look at.  There are at least 2 scrolling layers, forground, where Jasper runs, and the background.  The sound and music is very retro as well.  They almost sound like they’re done on a sound-blaster pro or 16.  There isn’t alot of music, at least in the first 3 levels.  Most of it is in the menu, or the boss round.  It’s all presented really well.  Nice little sparkly animations, and particle effects, that look like they could have been done on old hardware.  In fact the requirements seem quite low, windows or mac, 400 mhz computer or faster.  I really like how his hat sort of trails behind him when he jumps.  There’s all kinds of little goodies that just add to the polish of this game.


The only flaw I’ve seen is that which is common to alot of platformers.  Sometimes you are trying to get to a high place or a secret place, and you jump and keep missing a platform.  And you know you can just drop down a little earlier and you got it.  And then you keep doing it until finally you make it there then you have to jump even higher and farther, and you get up to a point where you have to hit a really high place, and you make the jump and suddenly you fall down to where you were before you got up to the lower high place.  Well if you can make sense of what I just said


If you want the full retro-platformer experience, Jasper’s Journeys is definately for you.  There are 15 levels of platform jumping, magic using, action from Lexaloffle.  Lexaloffle are the makers of some other games you might have heard of such as Zen Puzzle Garden, and Chocolate Castle, so you have a good idea about this game.  Jasper’s Journeys is for both Mac-OSX and Windows-based PC’s.

Here’s the trailer:

Name: Jasper’s Journeys

Developer: Lexaloffle

Price: $19.95

Final analsys: Old-school platform-jumping action!  Would definitely recommend it.

Where you can get it:
Download the Mac OSX demo
Download the Windows demo

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