Tag Archives: Physics Puzzler

Human: Fall Flat lands on Xbox One May 12

The physics-defying and rule-breaking hilarity of cult PC puzzle game Human: Fall Flat will be unleashed on the Xbox One May 12th, developer Tomas Sakalauskas and publisher Curve Digital announced today.

Human: Fall Flat on Xbox One, brings all the content from the Steam version plus plenty of extras, and starting today pre-ordering Human: Fall Flat will also bag you the amusing physics puzzler Manual Samuel for free.

Launching on console and updating on Steam with additional content, brand new puzzles and a bespoke customization option, Human: Fall Flat has players escape surreal dreamscapes by solving open-ended puzzles while struggling with intentionally unsteady controls that result in hysterical clumsiness and potentially endless falling.

After releasing on Steam last year to considerable praise, Human: Fall Flat became a YouTube phenomenon, garnering more than 100 million cumulative views thanks to the game’s hilarious gameplay that had people discover their own solutions to overcome obstacles and “work” together as best they can to solve the puzzles in co-op mode.

At Curve Digital we like to provide people with an amazing value for their pre-order purchases and the Human: Fall Flat console pre-order continues this company philosophy,

said Jason Perkins, Managing Director at Curve Digital.

Human: Fall Flat and Manual Samuel have both earn massive praise from the community and by pre-ordering Human: Fall Flat on console people get two amazing games for the price of one. In addition PS4 users will also receive a dynamic theme developed by Truant Pixel.

Playing as Bob, players have complete control over his arms and movement. At first, this can make it challenging to traverse this beautiful yet deadly world. However, players who learn to master Bob’s movement will be rewarded with a wealth of opportunities to break the rules and beat the challenging puzzles that block their path. Bob can pull stuff. He can push stuff. He can kick stuff. He can carry stuff. He can climb stuff. He can break stuff. And he can use stuff on other stuff to make even more stuff happen. It’s all up to you – want to open that mysterious door? Or would you rather see how far you can throw a speaker set out that window?

Kill the Bad Guy review

Kill the Bad Guy is a great physics based puzzler which sees you laying waste to the criminal scum of the world. To do this you’ll set up traps before watching your plan come together in a spectacularly gory fashion.

The game is made up of 60 levels, split across 6 chapters, with some interesting bonus levels thrown in, Zombie fans will be happy. You play as an assassin who is tasked with taking out criminals of all levels, including one who his offensive to somebody’s mum! We don’t care though, we have a job to do.

It has a great art style, which perfectly to help you understand how the game works. Each level is no more than a city block in size which you have a full overview of. Anything that is white can be interacted with, whereas all black items can be used to help you cause the ‘accidental’ deaths. Your target has a field of view that can be turned on or off, they’ll be spooked by suspicious actions so timing is everything.

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When you pull off the hit, blood flies everywhere and to prove you have killed them you need to try and catch the tooth that flies out of their skull, well you don’t have to but you’ll want to so that you get the three-star rating. There is also a passport hidden in the map someone too. There are secondary objectives are riddles and clues which add an extra depth to the difficulty.

You’ll use all sorts of real world objects to kill the criminals, pianos, electric wires, cars and dogs, flying ones at that. When you first start a level, you can spend time working out what you need to do, the criminal will walk away and a second day will begin. Again, to get the highest rating you need to kill them on the first day, but you can always just reload the level.

The difficulty ramps up as you move through the chapters, but it’s a fun game to experiment with, the physics works perfectly so when things don’t work out as you expect it’s your fault rather than the game.

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The only thing I found myself struggling with were the controls, Kill the Bad guy was PC games previously and it’s easy to see how it would be easier to play the game using a mouse and keyboard. It works well with a controller but I sometimes felt that I could move around as quickly as I would have liked. The game randomly stutters when you reload a level causing you to miss the first few vital second when you are trying to do things quickly.

I really like Kill the Bad Guy, it’s challenging but a lot of fun. The gory deaths are excellent and I really enjoyed the subtle humour in the game, this is well worth your hard earned cash.

Thanks to Xbox for supporting TiX

In Between review

I have to admit, I didn’t know what to expect from developer Gentlymad’s In Between. I’d watched a few of the trailers and it looked intriguing if not a little puzzling. What could this journey through the mind of one unlucky individual offer that other puzzlers cannot?

So, In Between is set inside the mind of a man hit by a cruel twist of fate. Controlling him, you are both on a journey through the protagonist’s head. This world does not seem to obey the laws of physics however. The aim of the game is to free your mind by negotiating the 60-plus levels of puzzling goodness. Each of these puzzles will require your skill, speed of action, quickness of thought and all of your analytical, puzzle-solving skills.

First impressions of the game are good then. The graphics switch from full-on, almost street graffiti inspired interlude cut-scenes to the atmospheric, sepia toned seriousness of the puzzle levels. They’re beautifully rendered and hide a multitude of small quirks. Cogs move in the foreground as you move around, platforms glide and deadly caltrops rise and fall as you move. They’re all fluidly animated and make you really think about your next move.

In BetweenThe main character is also well drawn and slick. The mechanics of the game means that you can alter the point of gravity for him to get around the various puzzles and obstacles on the level arena you’re playing. Not that this is an easy process. The right stick controls the gravity while the left moves you along that platform. It’s a strange concept to get used to and it took me a few levels to really get my head around it.

Handily, there’s a tutorial chapter to guide you through the basics. This pushes you gently through the action at first, but once you’ve completed that, you’re pretty much on your own. It’s a good introduction, but it doesn’t necessarily prepare you for the next chapter of levels, where the designs, obstacles and extra elements get really devious.

The level designs lend themselves well to the game. It’s a good thing too, as with only 60 or so levels to play through, you’d make pretty short work of this title without them being a real challenge. There are lots of obstacles to negotiate and the developers have really thought about where they are placed and how you’ll need to get around them. Finding the escape formula may not be enough though. There are other hazards on the screen that will be out to get you, besides the laws of gravity and physics. The second chapter introduces the concept of darkness and fear. This has a tendency to creep up on you from the left of the screen unless you turn to face it. Even then, it will only retreat so far and you’ll face a race against it to get to where you need to be. Get swallowed up by this darkness and it’s level over.

In BetweenThere are other aspects to the obstacles too. It’s not just about moving the character. Some levels introduce a green normality area, where the right stick will not allow you to change the focus of gravity. It will, however, still affect the strange face-blocks that materialise when you stand on the blue platform switches. These can then be manipulated around the gaming area with the right stick to solve another puzzle, or part puzzle. Getting this wrong can be frustrating and if I’m honest, you’ll die lots of times before you’ll get it right. It can be immensely frustrating to get just close enough to the glowing portal to escape, only to slightly mistime a jump or drop and have to start from the beginning. On the larger levels, luckily, there are checkpoints to restart from but even they are devilish to get to.

So, the levels are well-designed, if devious, and the graphics are atmospheric. The transitions between level chapters gives a nice balance to the storyline, although the story does seem to jump between childhood memories and present day a little too much. This doesn’t make much difference to the way the game is played though. One good thing is that once a chapter is unlocked you can attempt the levels in any order. Handy if you’re stuck on a particularly tricky screen. To unlock the next chapter, you’ll need to complete a specific number of levels in each chapter. In the Tutorial, I didn’t notice that it had skipped to the next chapter, leaving three levels untouched, until I delved back into the Tutorial chapter. Just something to bear in mind if you want to beat all of the puzzles In Between has to offer.

The audio in-game is a little odd. There are certain areas of some levels that will trigger an explanation or voice-over but other than that, it’s ambient background stuff for the most part. It lends well to the overall feel, but it’s fairly unremarkable to say the least. I’m not expecting thumping techno, given the nature of the game, but a soundtrack that’s a little more memorable might have been preferred. The cut-scenes for In Between have more in the way of speech with some interaction, but little else to promote the backstory.

In BetweenOverall then, In Between is a very slick, atmospheric puzzle platformer, with a twist. That twist allows more three or four dimensional thinking when it comes to solving the puzzles that it offers. The graphics and animation are well executed and the gameplay itself, while often infuriatingly unforgiving, rewards with a sense of achievement when each level is complete. Bear in mind that with just 60 levels, if you’re particularly adept at non-lateral thinking, this might just be too short. If not, then you’re staring down the barrel of a fiendish puzzler that will keep you swearing at it for hours.

Thanks to Gentlymad, Headup Games and Xbox for supporting TiX

review

There are certain games out there that revel in the darker side of humanity; titles like Evil Genius, Plague Inc., Dungeon Keeper, Overlord, and now 101 Ways to Die. These are titles that explore those evil ‘what if’ scenarios you occasionally play-out in your head.

“What if I created a plague that wiped out 99% of the human race?”

“What if I built a grand dungeon full of traps and torture chambers to quell any hero who dares oppose me?”

“What if I wanted to create a comprehensive book on 101 different ways to kill someone?”

Indeed that last question is answered here, and of course it’s approached in a comical and somewhat light-hearted way. In 101 Ways to Die you are tasked with aiding Professor Ernst Splattunfuder in placing a set of devices, in a multitude of different chambers, with the intension of brutally maiming and killing the mindless lab creatures known as Splatts, so you can record 101 different ways to kill them in a book.

This delightfully deranged concept very much feels like playing the opposite of Lemmings, and it’s terrifically and gruesomely satisfying. Each level gives you a limited set of devices to place which must then achieve specific types of kills on the handful of Splatts that are released into it, preventing as many of them as possible from escaping unharmed. Often you’re tasked with achieving a single specific kill that will earn you one star, with bonus objectives earning you the remaining two in a familiar three star rating system. Completing the bonus objectives can prove particularly difficult, challenging you to kill all Splatts on a level and frequently asking you to perform a kill with a specific device or even combination of devices and environmental hazards. It can get tricky early on.

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101 Ways to Die falls into that same pit that point ’n click titles so often do, with developer logic not translating to the player. Some levels are baffling, asking you to perform kills that seem impossible or too dependent on luck. However, as you go about placing your maiming, burning, slicing, flinging and exploding devices, and watch the Splatts spawn from their fixed points and path-find their way to the exit, things do begin to reveal themselves.

There’s clearly thoughtful and clever design at work on each of the levels. The set of devices you’re given are more than enough to achieve all the objectives and earn you those three stars. What seems insurmountable at first can often be broken down with a little trial and error and study of how devices work together, as well as the paths the Splatts take and the timing of their spawns. And as you learn more about how the physics and devices work with each passing level, you’re soon equipped enough to go back and annihilate those Splatts that avoided your traps the first time around.

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However, the challenge soon ramps up further, with the introduction of modified Splatts that can, for example, run faster or take more damage. This complicates things and forces you to rethink your tactics. Timing becomes more important, as does choosing the right devices for the right Splatt. It turns from reverse Lemmings to a more sinister form of Mouse Trap, and the satisfaction grows alongside the challenge. However, by this point the cracks in the experience have also grown.

101 Ways to Die’s audio is woefully underdeveloped. Sound effects are few and far between, with only the odd splat and boom heard as Splatts meet their doom. No music accompanies the slaughter either. There was an opportunity here to add some extra character to the title. Grunts as the Splatts marched across the screen, some more screams and yelps, along with better sound effects from the devices and an upbeat tune, would have all done wonders for the overall presentation. We also encountered a handful of bugs, with devices disappearing randomly and even Splatts dying from no cause or even whilst they were spawning. Additionally, levels are unlocked based on the amount of stars you have and the cost proves a little steep, often presenting us with a locked level because we had missed a couple of stars. It was a disappointing pause on otherwise well-paced progress.

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There’s no denying the dark, comical aesthetic and gruesome concept works; the satisfaction of setting up a perfect obstacle course of death is delightful. However, the poor audio presentation really hurt the atmosphere, and the occasional bug and star grinding also hurt the overall enjoyment. Still, if you’re looking for a physics puzzler with a dark twist, 101 Ways to Die will scratch that itch gloriously. It could certainly have been better but what’s here is still fun.

Thanks to Xbox and Vision Games for supporting TiX

101 Ways To Die launch trailer released

101wtd_2The release date for the dark and insidious physics puzzler, 101 Ways To Die, is creeping ever closer. As such Four Door Lemon and Vision Game Publishing have announced a new launch trailer showing off the murderous mayhem that ensues behind the closed doors of the Splatenfuder mansion.

As Professor Splatenfuder’s lab assistant, you are tasked with finding the most violent and brutal ways to maim, slice, burn, explode, rip and impale lab-created creatures known as Splatts by utilising a variety of madcap and deadly implements, in order to replace the professors life work – his book on 101 ways to die.

101 Ways To Die is out on the 22nd March and will be priced at is priced at £10.99/$14.99/€14.99.

Dare you delve into the depravity of Professor Splatenfuders magnum opus, and ensure none of the Splatts surive?