I wanna be a Charr

Creator: ねころん

Average Rating
7.5 / 10
Average Difficulty
82.8 / 100
[Download Not Available]

Tags:

Adventure (1) Needle (2) Boss (2) Secrets (1) unfinished (1) Noesis-Like (1)

Screenshots

  • by Wolfiexe
  • by Wolfiexe
  • by Wolfiexe
  • by Raganoxer
  • by theTics
  • by Raganoxer
  • by Raganoxer
  • by Raganoxer
  • by Raganoxer
  • by Wolfiexe
  • by theTics

6 Reviews:

theTics
Rating based on all coins and achievements.

Charr is a game that uses secrets in the best way. The reason is that secrets are optional. We know how bad mandatory secrets are. Unless the secret is obvious, you have to take countless risk deaths to find it, which heavily reduces the fun. But if you make the secret obvious, there's no meaning of finding it.
Charr resolves this dilemma by improving the accessibility to secrets. Sometimes you have to play a stage multiple times if you've missed or couldn't find the secrets at one time. Then normally you might have to play the long stage again, or even the entire game. In Charr, however, you start in a hub with several portals. You can go any portals that you want to find secrets or you can just head out and go back at any time. Most of the stages(portals) are also very short, with 2 or 3 rooms, but secrets are still really hard to find. So in that way, the game maintains the essence of secrets while giving the player a choice whether he will go for the secrets or not.

Before talking about secrets, I'll take a moment to think about the normal part of the game. The first few stages are pretty boring, but it starts to get fun from stage 'Fun'. Every stage from then on has unique concepts. Cherry clock(it reflects the real time), water maze, timed repetition... all of them were unlike anything I've seen before.
Some traps are clever, too. The one in Hurrah where one of the cherry cycles stops when you're about to get the first yellow coin, and the one in Jump where one of the blocks doesn't auto-bounce so you can just fall off and die, were great traps. Can't forget the trap that pushed me into the difficulty select screen when I fell into random holes!
Bosses leave a lot to be desired, though. Apple boss is undoubtedly a substandard boss from default-style bad fangames. Bowser might be mediocre because it's unusual, but none of the Pokemons had an appeal for me. They were eight bosses with just eight ordinary patterns.

If you get all yellow coins, chances are you'll be interested in the red coin you've seen on the menu screen. Charr tells you 'this game has secrets' in a natural way. Many people might find their first red coin in Beginner when they just walk forward after getting the yellow coin. If you couldn't find it, you'll eventually find one in Qualify. If you begin to realize all stages have red coins, you'll find the game new and feel the true beauty of Charr.

There are reasons why I found those secrets so charming. First, most of the red coins are really hard to find but hidden in novel ways. I've cleared the majority of the stages at least 5 times to find them. They were usually in the places where I put as the last options because they're hard to reach. Some secrets are not just hidden by fake blocks, but only accessible if certain conditions are satisfied. Orthodox, Easy, and Lucky red coins are great examples.
Speaking of Lucky, I like how stylish RNG in Charr is. In Lucky, you need some degree of luck no matter what coin you're going for. But not pure luck, you can reduce the risk by doing needle jumps. Even with the setup, I always felt a subtle tension when I go down the holes, and waiting for the slot. There's also an RNG spike in the first screen of Normal that falls so fast that you can't just ignore. The RNG spike is set randomly out of 17 spikes, so you have to run for 1/17 chance every time you reset. These moments gave me good scary feelings.

Another reason is the difficulty gap between yellow and red coins. I still remember when I played this game in 2011, I got shocked by the dramatic increase in difficulty after Bowser(30->70). Yet again, I felt so when I was grinding red coins. Jump and Orthodox both took me 20 minutes to beat normally, but they took 12 and 17 hours respectively to get red coins. This kind of gap might be disturbing for someone, but it rather made me excited. It might be the same reason why I found 'I wanna be the Gap' fascinating. For some reason, unexpected change sometimes gives the energy to the game and makes it fun.

I've been using the term 'red coin' instead of 'secret' because the secret is not all about coins. There's the last variety that Charr offers, the achievement. Achievements are even harder than red coins to find; I didn't even know that it existed until I got 9th red coin. There's a fake block in the left wall in the portal room, which leads to the achievement room. When you get achievement, it produces an unusual sound effect and you can check it out in the room. Some of the achievements are quite easy to get, but some of them are extremely difficult to even find. Did you know that there's an achievement for beating the apple boss while standing only in the right down corner? This kind of achievement might be considered unfair, but it is interesting by its existence for anyone seeking achievements.

Playing this game was like looking into an object under a microscope. The actual map always remains the same, but when I peered into the stage, there were far more than meets the eye. I was surprised that the game has more variety than I expected. I was also surprised by the game's high-level platforming and elaborate designs in the earliest fangame era. It was such an astonishing game in many ways.

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Tagged as: Needle Boss Secrets
[5] Likes
Rating: 9.6 96       Difficulty: 92 92
Jul 26, 2020
Wolfiexe
Rating based on All Red Coins.

Charr is a very old collectathon fangame dating back to 2011, featuring 17 stages each corresponding to a different letter of the alphabet. There are also a few bosses scattered in-between the stage hubs however whilst they definitely aren't trivial, they're not really what you'll be playing the game for and not at all where the strengths lie.

The game consists of a few hubs, each of which is unlocked when all yellow coins in the previous hub stages have been collected. Every stage brings something a bit different. To list a few, J (Jump) has you auto-jumping (or bouncing) everywhere you move. L (Lucky) is exactly as the name suggests, having you travel through a short segment to increase your odds of hitting the jackpot on a slot machine at the end. M (Material) aside some spooky cherry platforming features a reverse-spotlight maze spanning multiple screens with Mr. X-equivalent cherries lurking within. I could go on and there are certainly a few stages that didn't stand out too much, but the amount of variety and uniqueness on show is pretty impressive, despite the very lacklustre production value.

Every stage features a red coin, which is essentially the secret of the stage. Out of the 17 red coins, a couple of them took me longer than all the rest combined (Jump and Orthodox) which means if you're going for what is essentially All Clear (minus some questionable achievements) then you'll be in for quite a grind in parts. Still, it's worth experimenting and giving them a try as just like the main stages, the red coins stay very varied in design.

A big minus on the game is the production value, although given the age of this game it's not really expected for it to be any visual or audio marvel. Guy Rock features prominently throughout with the odd song change here and there, and everyone's favourite classic tilesets will follow you throughout the bulk of the stages.

Charr also features a little achievement room hidden to the left of the hub-portal. There aren't too many achievements although a couple secrets in the game allow you to unlock some additional costumes for The Kid which is a nice touch. Some of the achievements I'm aware of sound a bit too much (I'm unsure if anyone has ever gotten the Orthodox achievement to do like 30+ loops of a certain segment without dying), so I'm not really factoring that into the rating here.

I was slightly unsure on how to rate the difficulty of this, given there's no real GG screen or ending, although I can agree the most likely conclusion would be after beating all 17 stages with just the yellow coins. With that alone, I'd estimate it to maybe a 75~, although going for the red coins proves a very tricky challenge which ramped it up moreso for my final rating, just to give some context for my score.

Overall though, Charr is quite an interesting game. If you can look past the often shoddy production value and shaky segments, you'll find something unique in here. I find it very impressive in regards to the ideas and creative design in a game that stands as 8 years old now. I can't ever see it being finished, but I think it could stand as a great concept for a game for others to follow-up on.

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Tagged as: Adventure Needle Boss
[2] Likes
Rating: 7.2 72       Difficulty: 90 90
May 8, 2019
Shinobu
Kinda super late but surprising that a lot of segments in Noesis was inspired from this game. Or rather, awfully similar.

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Tagged as: Noesis-Like
[1] Like
Rating: N/A       Difficulty: N/A
Feb 16, 2020
Raganoxer
To be honest, nostalgia is what pressures me to give this a high review. This is the first fangame i remember beating that i found "difficult" Getting the red coins and making your way through each course is honestly fun. And while it may look simple, i believe its level design is somewhat unique. Its a fangame i honestly recommend to anyone who has a high enough patience, and a love for secrets.

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[1] Like
Rating: 7.5 75       Difficulty: 80 80
Aug 11, 2015
slenderbrine97
A very old and very good classic fangame. Very hard too! Highly raccomanded to experienced players, sadly not finished.

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[0] Likes
Rating: 4.5 45       Difficulty: 72 72
Jan 20, 2018