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Cheap PC Gaming: Proun

This shaped out really well.

Proud is a unique racing game. You and your competitors are all balls (that is, you are actual spherical objects) and you’re rolling your way along a cable. The idea is to rotate around the cable to avoid the geometrically-shaped obstacles that are touching it so you can keep your speed up.

It's difficult to get the full effect of the visuals from such a small screenshot, but it's still pretty.
As I said, it’s quite unique in this respect. You can’t hit the other racers, instead just avoiding obstacles as smoothly as you can with as little rotation as you can, as you lose speed when moving around the cable. Go for a while without hitting an obstacle and you’ll earn a speed boost that is guaranteed to be a big help, provided you can continue to avoid the obstacles at the higher speed it will propel you to for a few seconds, which is easier said than done for a newer player.

Play your way through the first (and therefore easiest) championship and you’ll unlock the next speed. As you might imagine, the faster the mode you play at the more difficult the game will get, starting with the slowest speed, Fast, and progressing through Sonic and Supersonic until you finally unlock Speed of Light. There’s also a split screen mode (which I’m unable to try out as there’s nobody around for me to play against) and a time trial mode, which also features the ability to race against the ghosts of all of your previous times. This coupled with online leaderboards will add some replayability, provided you don’t recoil when you see that the number one times are generally an entire minute faster than your own.

Perhaps the most intriguing thing about Proun, however, is not necessarily the gameplay. Whilst it’s certainly fun enough to play and is rather original in style, the visuals were what really struck when I first played the game . Proun is not just graphically impressive, but aesthetically gorgeous too. It’s made of bright, vibrantly coloured basic shapes and long, spiralling lines that make you feel a little like you’ve accidentally taken some LSD. That’s all there is to the aesthetics, and it’s all the stronger for it – its winding track and strikingly vivid colouring benefits hugely from being kept so simple, creating what is an almost entrancing game experience that I’ve only really felt elsewhere in games like Fl0w and Flower.

This screenshot has got huge balls.
The refreshingly simplified look is enhanced by excellent graphical quality too – I’m playing it at 1080p with vertical sync and anti-aliasing and the game both looks and runs smoother than chocolate fondue, only enhancing the hypnotic effect.

There isn’t really any reason not to try Proun. It’s gorgeous and you can choose if you want to pay for it and how much you want to pay after you’ve played it, as the game uses a ‘Pay What You Want’ model. You can get the game free and decide later, with the people who do pay for the game getting a bonus track to play around on; a definite advantage considering the game only features four tracks, one of which is unlockable. Whilst I understand too many tracks would be a little intimidating as, at higher speeds, an intimate knowledge of the tracks is a necessity, a couple more wouldn’t hurt. You can always make your own and try other peoples’ custom tracks, though…

Proun is unique, cheap (if you so choose) and utterly gorgeous. The official website says that it will run on almost any Windows-based system, and you can always try it free to make sure anyway. The official trailer is below and you can buy the game from the official website.

  1. Snakefingers13
    Since: Jul 2009

    Definitely giving this a look. Downloading now, signup is incredibly easy.

    Comment posted on 29/06/2011 at 09:14.
    • Snakefingers13
      Since: Jul 2009

      Spent a while trying it out. Fast speed is the easy mode, feels like you’re crawling along. Sonic requires some reflexes, but isn’t too difficult. Supersonic is what I’m stuck on at the moment. I shudder to think how fast Speed Of Light will be. The music can get a tad annoying, but it’s really quite good. Graphics are excellent, and that’s even with my awful monitor.

      If, like me, you have an innate ability to crash into everything in your way, then maybe this isn’t quite the game for you, but it’s definitely worth a go. An excellent game considering it was developed as a spare-time project.

      Comment posted on 29/06/2011 at 10:01.
  2. igotmy9milli
    Since: Apr 2010

    Downloading this now. Looks pretty awesome.

    Comment posted on 29/06/2011 at 09:35.
  3. TSBonyman
    Since: Dec 2009

    Gosh, that looks lovely, will definitely try it, thanks

    Comment posted on 29/06/2011 at 10:02.
  4. 3shirts
    Since: Aug 2008

    This seems very similar to an Android game called Speedx 3D. If so, it’s great fun, very challenging but very addictive

    Comment posted on 29/06/2011 at 10:05.
    • KeRaSh
      Since: Nov 2009

      Thanks for the tip. Like the style of the game. It’s not always easy to find some gems in the Android Market.

      Comment posted on 29/06/2011 at 12:12.
    • Gamoc
      Since: Forever

      The similarity never struck me before but, now you mention it, yes, it’s a little bit similar.

      Comment posted on 29/06/2011 at 14:03.
  5. Dazbobaby
    Since: Aug 2010

    I loved it, thanks for the tipoff Gamoc.

    My first ever play of it: in 1080p

    Comment posted on 29/06/2011 at 16:08.