As a long-time fan of the Super Monkey Ball series, which I haven’t had a decent fix with for a little while, Marble Maid is a title that looked right up my alley. In many ways similar to the well-known series, you’ll take control of your tarted up (we’ll get to that) little anime maid trying to work your way around some challenging courses, being sure to vanquish any dust bunnies that you encounter. In principle the gameplay does work, but even a short time spent with the title shows the substantial gaps in smart level design and polish between this and the series that inspired it. Swinging a bit wildly between too basic and weirdly challenging it’s not always the courses themselves that kill you but the clock. From stage to stage the swing in difficulty to get everything collected and to your goal feels inconsistent at best, and there are some where it feels quite unfair as there are multiple reasons you could get held up along the way. This changes the feel from generally light and breezy fun to a variety of frustrations, and it veers pretty wildly away from the path you may be anticipating in that regard. Then there’s the unlockable content… which I suppose you could choose to ignore, but just feels gross honestly. As it is the main character is pretty needlessly sexed up but the art goes so much further and really ends feeling like compensation for deficient gameplay.
Justin Nation, Score: