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Redefining platforming games: Octahedron (Switch) review

Puzzle games have always been a minority in gaming – mostly because of how more sales a good action adventure title generated. Add to this the fact that the latter titles could also feature a couple of neat puzzles and brain racking challenges (see God of War for definite proof) and we have ourselves a clear reason. Luckily, some developers still focus on an old-school puzzle title, and a very recent example of this is Octahedron.

Octahedron, developed by Demimonde and published by colossus Square Enix, is a puzzle game which has recently released on the Nintendo Switch console through the new Transfixed Edition, after being already available on PS4, Xbox One and Steam. Octahedron starts with a man who is sucked into this psychedelic world full of pumping music and vibrating colours. The spectrum of colours is so varied that it immediately appeals to the player, who are themselves sucked into the game. Mechanics are very simple as well, making the process of learning the game an impressively short one. As many great titles teach us, learning is one thing but mastering it is a whole different thing, and Octahedron shows to be a strong believer of the mantra.

Octahedron Switch Gameplay BEING SHOWN ON A sWITCH THAT IS BEING HELD BY SOMEONE

As previously mentioned, mechanics are very easy. You move with the analogue stick and create platforms with the right trigger of the Switch. As you progress, you unlock new platforms which you can cycle through with the left trigger. You have to use the platforms created to reach a floating cube at the top of the level, which will take you to the next level in turn. Levels work pretty similarly to Super Mario Bros. in the way that you have a set number of levels in each world, and when you beat all the levels in that world you unlock the next set of levels.

Along your way, you will encounter all types of perils. From moving creatures to laser flooring, and even a 360-degree rotating laser, the game will definitely have you keep your eyes open to avoid risking a life. There are frequent checkpoints throughout levels so there will not be a lot of raging upon death. If you don’t die a lot that is, as if you lose all of your lives (made up of 3 hitpoints each) you will be returned to the menu and have to restart the level again. I must admit that the levels are very fair, and I have not caught myself raging against the game, which I’ll admit does not happen very frequently. Nonetheless, it can get frustrating especially if you accept the challenge that the game gives you: collect EVERYTHING.

Octahedron Switch Gameplay

That is correct; the game challenges you to obtain a 100% completion rate. After each beaten level, the game displays all the challenges which it gives you – diamonds collected, flowers collected, avoiding death, beating the set completion times and sticking under the amount of platforms created. As you can see there is a lot of challenges to handle, but as the game plays very well, I will not be surprised to see players achieving full completion of the title.

All in all, Octahedron is an ode to puzzle classics of old, as with simple and easy to learn mechanics it challenges even the smartest of takers with a quite difficult task with limited means. Level progression is also rewarding, as you get to discover new challenges and tools along the way which make the climb both tougher but more accomplishing with each new step. It is also quite addicting, so don’t be ashamed to admit picking up the game and spending 3 to 4 hours on it. It is that good.

Rating: 85%

The TL;DR

  • Easy to learn, hard to master
  • Tons of levels for hours of fun
  • Vibrant colours, addicting soundtrack
  • Loads of replayability to achieve 100% on all levels

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