I used to love SimCity so much that I bought SimEverything, which is why I didn't just play SimTower but studied a game guide in a bookstore in order to discern how to best manage the game's elevators. Elevator management! The joy.
I liked my GameCube enough that I gave Odama an honest try, despite or because it was a real-time strategy war game that was also a pinball game. I never had someone play the support role using Donkey Kong bongo controls, but the option was available.
Sorry, but I skipped Seaman and so I can't tell you that I am an expert of the weird, awkward, alternately fun and boring works of one of the most enduring creators of oddball games, Yoot Saito. I can at least tell you that his new game on 3DS is... very Yoot Saito.
Aero Porter is a game about getting luggage onto aeroplanes, which would be a damning description if SimCity, a game about city planning, wasn't proven to be fun and if a game about making boxes — ArtStyle Boxlife — wasn't one of my favourite games (ever!).
Real-life tedium can be turned into superb video games.
I just can't tell you that Aero Porter is superb. Not yet. I'm suffering through it now, in the bits that I play when I'm not being pulled back into the new Professor Layton. I'm suffering, but I'm fascinated, because this thing is a mad creation.
The luggage spirals down, down, down. You can speed up the belts or slow them down. The pieces of luggage are different colours and you want to get them onto their proper planes. Your main lever of control are the connecting arms that you can raise and lower — a set on the left and a set on the right — that reconfigure the game's stack of circular belts into a connected spiral. Lowering the right arms lets the luggage swirl to the next levels down. Lowering the left arm lets the luggage spiral back up. Using these arms, you want to get the luggage on like-colored luggage rings and then send them into the waiting planes, before those planes take off.
That's not madness, you might say. That sounds like a straightforward puzzle game.
It is a puzzle game. It is hard. It is also a game that gives you a bonus (!) if you get all of a plane's proper luggage on it before it takes off. And it's a game that puts all these belts on a power meter that drains as the belts roll and drains faster if you speed the belt up. You can refuel by dropping a gas tank on the same luggage belt as long as you can get it to the bottom belt and then drop it lower still — ideally without dropping any luggage off the belt in the process. But to save power, you can dim the lights in the game and play in the dark. Also: there are bombs, as you can see in the screenshot here. (That's screenshot in the singular; I've broken the vertically-aligned shot up in this article to make room for my scribblings.)
Aero Porter's fun? It's tedious? It's too hard, too early? All of that. Plus: it's got some weird Streetpass feature that lets me collect planes and then share them to send them to other people's games and. I'll be shocked if I ever Streetpass with anyone else who is playing this.
I'm not confident that I can recommend this game yet, but if you were wondering what in the world Yoot Saito is up to or what to make of the new 3DS luggage game, I sure hope this helped.