It was The Swapper’s clay-like art style and 2D spaceship setting (not to mention the beautiful lighting) that first caught my eye. Fortunately the game’s also got substance. It’s a 2D Metroidvania-style platformer in which you have the ability to create clones of yourself that will mimic your actions. Additionally, you also have the ability to switch between your clones. As you might imagine, this opens the flood gates for some interesting and clever puzzle design.
It should come as no surprise that one of the designers on Way, Chris Bell, is also a member of thatgamecompany and working on the upcoming title, Journey. The two games undeniably share some DNA. Similarly to Journey, Way is a game about simplistic communication between co-op partners. You and another player each make your way (har har) through rather seemingly simple 2D platforming obstacles. The catch comes when your obstacles are only viewable to your partner. Using only hand signals and a couple of emoticons, you must direct your partner to the end. It’s a game that really distills human cooperation down to its most simplistic form.
Skulls of The Shogun
We’ve been seeing Skulls of the Shogunfor what feels like forever now. The Cartoon-style, Samurai-themed strategy game has been at, like, every convention over the last two or so years. The game is now set to launched on XBLA early next year. And it’s looking and playing great.
Saying Antichamber is a first-person puzzler doesn’t really do the game justice. More importantly, it’s a game about subverting players’ expectations. As gamers, we’ve come to develop a certain way of thinking about games and Antichamber seeks to totally screw with our heads. Taking place in a 3D, non-euclidean world, the game consists of what I can really only describe as MC Escher-like mindfuck puzzles. Antichamber looked great when we first saw it back at PAX and after diving deeper into it, it’s one we can’t wait for
I suspect FEZ is a game you’ll be hearing a lot about in the coming months. At its core, it is a 2D puzzle platformer with a 16-bit art style. However, it’s not long into the game before its main character, Gomez, gains the gift of 3D, allowing you to rotate the world horizontally. From here you’ll be shifting perspectives to solve platforming puzzles. It all takes place in Villageville, a town filled with hilarious NPCs. FEZ is a wonderful balance between old and new school design sensibilities and it’s going to hit Xbox Live Arcade early next year.