Minutes (PlayStation 4) Review

By Az Elias 11.11.2014

Review for Minutes on PlayStation 4

Red Phantom Games, a relatively new studio just one man strong in the form of Richard Ogden, a man with a long history in the gaming industry, having worked at Bigbig Studios and Codemasters, has just released its first title on PlayStation 4 and PS Vita. Minutes is a classic example of the simplest ideas coming together to create the best, and should definitely be checked out by anyone after a quick-speed, addictive puzzler.

With a hint of a bullet-hell shooter about it, Minutes consists of 60 minute-long intense puzzle-action sequences (the name makes sense now, right?). Taking control of a mere circle, the name of the game is to move it around the fixed screen, dodging dark lines of energy that zip and spin across, whilst moving into light energy and absorbing as much of it as possible to meet the minimum target score before the 60 seconds are up.

Dodge and absorb - game concepts don't get much simpler than that! The first few levels naturally appear to be very manageable, until things begin to take a turn for the worst, as dark energy starts to swarm the screen, with careful and quick movement of the circle needed to keep it from taking damage. The circle can only take so many hits before it explodes and causes an immediate failure of the stage.

With minimum target scores being met early on, the results screens raise questions about how on earth it is possible to meet the second and even third targets. That is quickly cleared up through unlockable bonuses and power-ups. The more targets that are met, the more unlockables will be earned, and with them, new methods for achieving more points. Eventually, the ability to increase and decrease the size of the circle will unlock, where a large size will double the points when light energy is collected but will cause the circle to take up more screen space and pose problems, whilst decreasing it will only award with half-points but allow it to nimble through gaps during hectic moments. An extra-large size that triples points earned even becomes available later on.

Screenshot for Minutes on PlayStation 4

Power-ups in the form of a shield to block damage, the option to slow down time, restoring the circle's health and destroying immediate dark energy also can be unlocked and upgraded through further score targets being met. At this point, it becomes clear how to meet the early stage goals, by returning to them and putting the double and triple score multipliers and power-ups to work and breezing through.

There are a few other aspects of the game to keep an eye on to fully complete every level. This includes taking no damage at all; collecting every bit of light energy; and finding the hidden 'Minuteman' in every stage - a nearly-invisible smiley face that will fly across the background of the action and can be grabbed with a tap of the touch pad. Combining all of these targets to master every stage is no small feat, and will demand countless replays of all of them. With the sheer intensity of so many of the levels, anyone that successfully manages to take no damage and beat every target score deserves very high praise.

The 60 levels, even with all of the demand for replaying them, won't last forever, though, and that's why Red Phantom Games has implemented the Daily Challenge. Every day, for 24 hours only, a brand-new stage will become available to play with just one chance to try and achieve the highest score possible and rank in the online scoreboards. How many levels Mr. Ogden has got in the pipeline isn't known, but it definitely gives incentive to keep coming back to Minutes on a daily basis right now.

It has popped up rather out of the blue, but don't let Minutes slip under the radar; puzzling and bullet-hell action combine to create a top indie title that will keep many hours satisfying.

Screenshot for Minutes on PlayStation 4

Cubed3 Rating

Rated 8 out of 10

Great - Silver Award

Rated 8 out of 10

It is often the case that a great little game will spring up out of nowhere, and that's definitely the situation here with Red Phantom Games' Minutes. Simple to play but very addictive, and challenging but rarely frustrating, Minutes delivers quick-burst, hectic puzzle-action gameplay with enough to come back to on a daily basis. It is well worth the money, and it will be good to see just what else the studio comes out with in the future after this great first independent project.


Red Phantom


Red Phantom





C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  8/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  8/10 (1 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date None   Japan release date None   Australian release date Out now   


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