Only 1 island to play on
Save the Pingus. That is your mission. They have been forced to leave their home in the South Pole, and venture out into the big bad world. But they are unprepared for the dangers that await them. They need help. They need a leader. They need YOU!
Pingus is essentially a Lemmings game at heart. But instead of Lemmings, you must save penguins. The poor creatures just wonder around aimlessly, not understanding the dangers that surround them. If they fall from a great height, they will die. If they fall into the sea, they will drown. So it's up to you to train them, and keep them safe.
Just as with Lemmings, you have to guide the Pingus safely home. You must create a safe path for them to follow. But how do you do that, I hear you ask? Well, you must assign them tasks. A list of tasks is shown down the left side of the screen, and the number of times you can perform that task is shown as a number next to the task. The 8 tasks are Digger, Floater, Basher, Jumper, Miner, Bomber, Bridger, and Climber. In early levels, you may only have one of these tasks available to you. But soon, you must assign different tasks to different Pingus in order to complete the level. To assign a task, you simply click on a task to the left, then click on a Pingus, and watch him happily carry out his task.
At the start of each level, you are told how many Pingus there are in total, and how many you have to save. Since the game takes place on 'Tutorial Island', there is no time limit, so you can take your time and plan strategies. You also get infinite retries, so if you had failed a level, you can have fun nuking the poor wee Pingus, are trying again. Successfully completing a level unlocks the next level, allowing you to progress further. On the down side, there is only 22 levels on Tutorial Island, plus 8 Halloween levels, making it a rather short game. And we don't know the Pingus fate once they leave Tutorial island.
Graphics are cute. Very cute! I love watching the Pingus walk back and forth on their big feet. But they're just as cute when they carry out tasks that you assign them. Each task on the left is beautifully animated, but I think my favourite is the Basher, as he bashed through obstacles using his wings. But Floaters are also adorable, with their little propeller packs strapped on to their backs. Some levels even have clouds floating past, or snow falling, which is lovely to watch. Most of the levels have exits shaped like a giant penguin igloo, which was a nice touch, I thought.
On the level selection screen, levels you have completed are shown in green, levels you haven't completed yet are shown in red, and unlocked levels are shown as grey. The blackboard screen introducing each level is like you are getting lessons - very appropriate for Tutorial Island!
MUSIC AND SOUND EFFECTS
Nice, cheerful music plays throughout the game, making it fun to play. The Pingus themselves make a cute 'Eshu' sound at beginning of each level. It's a hard noise to describe, but listen out for it. There is also a round of applause when you complete a level. Now this is where I have to point out the Nuking feature. You can't have a Lemmings game, without the ability to Nuke, now, can you? When you Nuke the poor Pingus, they all turn towards you, and say 'That's not a good idea'. Then a 15 second counter begins, before they all go POP!
Pingus is a fun Lemmings game, that adds its own stamp. You, as their leader, must save a set number of Pingus to the safety of their penguin-shaped igloo, without letting them die (or you could just Nuke 'em, if you're feeling mean, tee hee). To guide them, you have to assign them skills, such as Floater, Basher, or Jumper. These skills are shown on the left side of the screen, and you are told how many Pingus to save for each level. The graphics are very cute and colourful, and the animation is nice and smooth. I love watching them perform their tasks.
Review by: Frodo
Safe for all ages