Today, Edmund McMillen was kind enough to let me try the Spewer beta. Now not a lot of you probably know what Spewer is, seeing how one of it's only mentions was on Edmund's Blog a while back, but I think that will change once it gets released. Spewer was made by Eli Piilonen, the programmer, Edmund McMillen, the artists, and Danny B. for music, and Jordan Fehr for sound effects. Right now it's only in beta, but it should be released in about a week.
Spewer is about a cute little...animal(?) that, well, spews. It regurgitates and consumes his own vomit to solve puzzles on a course laid out for him by The Doctor. Each puzzle consists of somesort of combination of walls/platforms, switches, spikes, the exit, your little spewer, and the vile liquid which he pukes. So, why does this little thing puke so much? Well, it can help you jump further/higher, or fill up spike pits to swim over (that's it initially). You only have a limited amount to start with (represented by the puke bar at the bottom of the screen), but you can re-consume it throughout the level to use it elsewhere (in the same level, you get a different amount of spew each level). That about covers it for game play, eventually it gets a little more involved (after chapter 1).
As for the art, it's similar to a lot of other of Edmund's games, which personally, is a style I really like. To me, the basic premise of Edmund's style is this; cute, yet utterly disgusting (to most people). This game isn't as offensive as some of his other games, like the C word and Carious Weltling (a game about a bird who pukes massive amounts of blood), although it does still have the more subtle disturbing aspects of Meat Boy (a platformer who's main character is a little guy made of meat, who leaves a little bloody trail wherever he goes). The game makes me a little bit nauseous when I play, I mean the whole idea of this cute little organism recycling his own vomit is a little unsettling, but it remains very cute. The background consists of The Doctor, a comparatively large figure who looks like a mad scientist. He does experiments, paces, and watches you somewhat disapprovingly as you jump and puke around to complete his challenges. He seems to be the one who has made you and is creating the challenges, but seeing how there isn't much of an intro, and there's no ending yet it's hard to tell the storyline.
The game play is fun and original, providing the player with challenges that show them new skills and test those skills. To be good at the game you have to learn fast and be kinda lucky. Because of the fluid physics, which are somewhat reminiscent of Dan Ball's water toy, sometimes gameplay is inexact, which can get frustrating. Then again I kind of suck at these kind of games, and there's still a week until the release, so a lot can change. So, with a little polish, which it's getting, this game could really turn in to a stellar little flash game. For me the game lasted about 2 and a half hours, but I take long on beating games, so more realistically you can probably finish it in under 2 hours, which is a good size for a flash game, and they might add more before release. I played the game all at once, because I couldn't find a save feature, which I'm sure will be there in the final.
When this game is finally released try it out, you'll have some fun. The art style and physics are very neat, and you'll probably be compelled to play the whole thing. Besides the main campaign there's also the level editor, with all the pieces in game (there's a lot of different tiles) to add some game play.
In the game, after every chapter you get a new ability. After ch. 1 there's the white spew, which kind of hang midair, ch. 2 there's red spew, it's just like the original green, but it pukes more strongly. ch. 3 is the black spew, which solidifies once it stops moving, and ch. 4 is the yellow spew, which makes you immune to acid as well as being able to spit it.