April 21, 2009 - It takes a lot for a 2D platformer to stand out today, some 25 years after the genre was born. Modern games boast enormous 3D worlds, the usual Phong lighting, and lots of Blinn-Phong approximation. The humble 2D game, which only allows for left and right movement and doesn't run on as powerful an engine, needs to offer something extraordinary in order to be noticed. Braid comes to mind. Or World of Goo. Recently, Broken Rules' And Yet It Moves has been catching the eye of many a 2D enthusiast. Literally a platformer with a twist, it takes the genre to another level by allowing the player to rotate the game world in 90 degree increments. It seems like such a simple mechanic, but it manages to make this quarter-century-old genre feel new again.
Your objective in each level is merely to reach the goal. There are no enemies to jump on, power-ups to use, or coins to collect. Conflict is created by the fact that your goal is not immediately accessible. A sheer cliff cannot be scaled -- until you spin the world 90 degrees clockwise, that is, creating a nice flat plain to stroll across. The developers have a lot of fun playing with this one idea. A spin might give you access to new areas but also send loose rock hailing down on your head to crush you. One early sequence pays homage to the boulder chase from Raiders of the Lost Ark. You may have to spin the world multiple times in order to manipulate a group of bats into scaring off a man-eating lizard. Playing And Yet It Moves, you're constantly discovering new things. There is a lot of trial and error, but regular checkpoints keep frustration levels down.
And Yet It Moves cements Broken Rules' status as a developer to watch. Expect big things from these guys. While it's only a few hours long, And Yet It Moves is one of the most addictive and refreshing games I've played this year. If you've been wondering what innovation is left to be explored in 2D platformers, spend some time in this bizarre world. The game empowers the player and lets us perform crazy stunts that have heretofore been impossible. My one complaint is that there isn't quite enough gameplay here to justify the $15 price tag. But, hey, what other game lets you trick a chimpanzee into throwing feces at itself?
|out of 10||click here for ratings guide|
A unique, paper machet world to explore. It's light on features, though.
The art style is great but there aren't a lot of flashy effects to be seen.
Pleasant ambient tunes and wildlife noises.
The 2D platformer is literally turned on its head. It's challenging but avoids being frustrating.
Only a few hours of gameplay, but a Competition mode will extend its life a bit.
(out of 10 / not an average)
Popular games in this genre:
1. Sonic X-Treme (Saturn)
2. Sonic the Hedgehog (X360)
3. Sonic the Hedgehog (1991) (Gen)
4. Sonic Adventure (DC)
5. Sonic the Hedgehog (PS3)
Popular games on this platform:
1. Sonic Heroes (PC)
2. Sonic CD (PC)
3. Ultima Online (PC)
4. Fallout 3 (PC)
5. Fallout: New Vegas (PC)