Timothy's Night | PS5 Review
Updated: Nov 19, 2021
Timothy's Night, developed and published by Wild Sphere, is a 3D action platformer set in 1940s America, where classic mobsters and gangsters rule the streets, but gangsters and other such problems are the least of your worries. Timothy's Night is essentially an enhanced edition of the 2018 game, Timothy Vs the Aliens and is a PlayStation 5 exclusive unlike its predecessor which started out as a PlayStation 4 exclusive but then made its way onto other platforms soon after release.
Timothy lived a pretty normal life until he was abducted by aliens when he was young through which he was given super-powers. Fast forward a few years into Timothy's adult life and the aliens are back again. This time, however, not with the goal of abducting Timothy, but rather to take over the city. With an arsenal of weapons available to you, you must take on the aliens head first and save the world.
First and foremost, I quite enjoyed the graphic style of Timothy's Night. The noir-style really worked and maintained the classic gangster movie type feel whilst also having a really fun and light-hearted animation style. This combination was really interesting to me as I sometimes feel the alien invasion type story is quite outplayed these days. However Timothy's Night brings a nice and refreshing twist on the idea where the setting is best described as Al Pacino movie meets Mars Attacks in an attractive comic book style. However, despite the world being visually attractive and interactive, I would say the graphics could have been better given it's a PlayStation 5 exclusive. The game boasts 60 FPS gameplay, however I'd argue that in general it runs much lower than this meaning this game easily could have been a cross-gen release without the PlayStation 4 version suffering needlessly. This would probably be my most significant complaint about Timothy's Night because I feel the developers could have done more to bring Timothy's world into the next generation of consoles. With this in mind though, there's good use of the Dualsense controller's haptic feedback where every step you take is felt through gentle vibration through the controller; or the falling rain being felt and heard through the controllers on-board speaker and finally, the adaptive triggers react differently depending on what weapon you're using. A charming touch, sure, but certainly not something I'd miss if this was a PlayStation 4 game.
Timothy's Night is mostly open world meaning you can wander around Little Fish City at your own leisure, climbing scaffolding to find collectibles or you can wander around hunting for cash to upgrade your arsenal of weapons from a simple revolver to the mobster classic: the tommy gun. Initially fending off the little aliens felt quite challenging because aiming felt unstable to me and the pistol that you start with isn't exactly the most effective, however once I unlocked an automatic weapon much of my irritation fighting off hordes of mini aliens was taken away thankfully.
I found the platforming a little bit difficult initially because your actions are relatively restricted to one meagre jump and I found Timothy's movements to feel quite sluggish and clunky. But I did find myself getting adjusted to what I could and couldn't do and the platforming became less frustrating allowing me to traverse the scaffolding structures and chase down thieves and trouble makers with some ease.
It felt very easy to appreciate Timothy's Night despite its flaws and is certainly a game that I enjoyed 'warts and all' as the saying goes. The dark, monochrome noir aesthetic was a real surprise to me and really drew me into the game more than I would have expected and paired with a jazz/blues style soundtrack I'd say Timothy's Night had a very specific charm to it that I feel shouldn't be overlooked. Despite its flaws however, as previously mentioned, I do believe this game could very much benefit from being cross-gen, making this fun little world accessible to a lot more gamers, especially considering that it's forecasted that PlayStation 5 shortages will be continuing for a long while yet. Oftentimes, I've found myself playing PlayStation 5 exclusives on stream and had people saying they're sad that it's not on the previous generation and my response a lot of the time has been that if it were available on PlayStation 4, many aspects that make the game wonderful would be absent and the experience be diminished by this. However, I didn't really get this feeling from Timothy's Night and would hope that in the future its PlayStation 5 exclusivity will be thrown out and it be made available on other platforms. There is a lot to appreciate in Little Fish City that would attract a lot of people and give a fair bit of enjoyment. Despite its flaws, I do believe that there is ample charm to impress a lot of gamers.
Lj's Rating: 3.5 brightly coloured aliens out of 5.
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Many thanks to Wild Sphere for the Review Key.
Timothy's Night | PlayStation Store