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Exit DS (Nintendo DS) Review

Review for Exit DS on Nintendo DS - on Nintendo Wii U, 3DS games review

Originally released a couple of years back on the PSP and XBOX Live Arcade, Exit came to the DS with high-hopes. Based on the simple premise of literally getting from point A to point B whilst saving various damsels/man-damsels in distress, the game is a nice mix of striking visuals and well put together gameplay. So, the arrival of the puzzle/platform title on the DS was surely only going to be a good thing? Right.

Wrong. Well, sort of. Exits DS is a bit of a tricky title to pin down. For one, its unashamedly stylish and cool, but its also a bit of a clunky bugger that will only really appeal to a very niche market. Needless to say, we've come away from this title with slightly mixed emotions. We want to love it, we really do, but something is holding us back.

You control Mr. Esc, the hero of the game. In this strange cel-shaded uber-stylised world you are given the simple task of saving people from mortal danger. You guide Mr. Esc through building upon building, saving shrieking idiots and guiding them to safety. What's nice about all this ludicrous simplicity is it makes the game instantly accessible and very easy to just pick up and play.

Screenshot for Exit DS on Nintendo DS - on Nintendo Wii U, 3DS games review

With over 100 levels and Wi-Fi leaderboards also available, there is certainly plenty to see and do in Exit DS and we have to admit becoming ever so slightly addicted to this title to start off with. But alas, the honeymoon did come to an end and with time frustrations started to crop up. In trying to DS-ify itself, Exit has committed a cardinal sin, the gameplay is clunky, awkward and at times quite unresponsive. You might not notice it to start with, but as time goes on and the levels start to get seriously ruddy hard, it starts to have an impact. By moving Mr. Esc by means of taps on the screen, you are always going to be slightly inaccurate and all too often he'll go plummeting to his death. Disobedience is costly.

So whilst the controls hold the game back, the levels themselves are numerous and at times hugely challenging. There's no doubt you're getting good pluck for your buck here. But will you last the whole game? We really struggled after a while, finding that quick ten minute sessions were all we could stand. Why? The just...hideously irritating. The damned civilians relentlessly cry 'help' and suchlike which will, after about five seconds, begin to make you murderous with rage.

In order to move around the levels you have to use keys, axes, switches, ropes, ladders and all manner of other clever trickery. There's no doubt the puzzles are unique and challenging, but at times they are just a bit too devious. As we've said, this game is best enjoyed in small doses, but as the levels get harder, they require more and more of your time. Add to this the need for precise controls as the game gets harder and you'll be seeing an awful lot of Mr. Esc squished into the floor as he courageously and stupidly runs off another edge. Idiot.

Exit DS really excels in the looks department. Put simply, this game is shexy. All the levels are nicely designed, the whole feel of the game is really unique and striking and the music (when not drowned out by cries of help from assorted idiots) is pretty solid too. So in terms of presentation we really can't fault it. Just look at the screens if you don't believe us.

Screenshot for Exit DS on Nintendo DS - on Nintendo Wii U, 3DS games review


What should be a solid and very challenging platform/puzzle sort of title is let down by some quite awful DS controls. The levels themselves are really well designed, but when you unwittingly commit suicide every two seconds, they lose their appeal.


Striking and stunning from start to finish. It just looks so damn cool.


The music is all fine and dandy, but the sound sampling and cries and wails from civilians will drive you nuts.


100 levels and a challenge all the way. It certainly offers you a lot if you can get past the irritating flaws.

Cubed3 Rating

Rated 7 out of 10

Good - Bronze Award

About this score
Rated 7 out of 10

We just like this game too much to mark it down harshly. You can actually change the controls so they're not so idiotic, but it is a bit of a hassle. And to be honest, the DS controls should work, but due to their hideous inaccuracy and twitchy nature, they don't. That's a real shame, as what you'll find beneath the frustration is a gem of a title that will really get your noodle working. Oh, and did we mention it looks shexy?

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C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  7/10

Reader Score

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Reader comments - add yours today Comments on this Review

Senior ModeratorStaff Member

I've had my eye on this game for a while and was hoping the DS version may turn out better than the PSP or LIVE versions. Now that it's all out 'n' stuff, would anyone be able to suggest the "best" version?

Twitter | C3 Writer/Moderator | Backloggery
Senior ModeratorStaff Member

Shame about those niggling problems. Still though, worth a try it out soon.

Cubed3 Admin/Founder & Designer

Wow thats cool. lol i just realized his name is Esc lol the button on the computer Keys.

When all is bad don't look for a easy way out. Because you wont know what to do once your out

Wolvesgod said:
Wow thats cool. lol i just realized his name is Esc lol the button on the computer Keys.

I wonder if there will be a PC version if so then the ESC button could transport the player to the next destinationSmilie

SuperYoshi6 PSN name
3DS friend code 2878-9581-8999

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