Taking inspiration of the aforementioned probe slamming itself into the side of the first obstacle it comes across, the game Forma.8 doesnít get off to the greatest of starts. Controlling your little ship via the left stick is a slow going affair, as you span across the interconnected - and growingly vast - environments at a snail's pace, whilst in a constant battle against your own inertia to evade terrain and enemies alike, akin to a pinball in a high score frenzy.
What exacerbates this feeling is the tone MixedBag are going for, with disparate electronic sounds creating a unique and very isolated ambience - reminiscent of 2016ís Inside - which by itself would be fantastic inclusion, but in conjunction with the already mentioned slow proceedings really hampers your first foray into its design.
Itís quite the feat then, that Forma.8 manages to turn it all around - with the acquisition of a few power ups - and managed to keep me coming back post-game to uncover its many secrets.
Once you have become accustomed to this metroidvania world, acquiesced yourself a powerup or two and maybe even stumbled upon a secret room, Forma.8 will shake things up a little with a much needed boss fight - the highlights of the game for me.
Whilst few in number, each of the boss fights within Forma.8 are memorable, merely because they take the exact opposite approach to gameplay proceedings thus far. Rather than blasting away with bombs and/or your shield, bosses require different kinds of approaches that are purely environmental in nature; from feeding it nearby enemies to simply running away.
Youíll be doing a bit of experimentation to figure out exactly what is required from you, and thankfully the painless checkpoint system will aid you in this endeavour.
Whilst suffering from a very shaky start, once you acquire a few powerups Forma.8 transforms into another great addition to the metroidvania genre, and whilst it doesnít do anything entirely new or original - borrowing a lot from its contemporaries - it excels at thinking outside the box with boss fights, whilst showcasing an intriguing wordless story within its isolated yet beautiful world - oh and we canít forget about the bountiful secrets hidden within either.
Review copy provided by the publisher for the PlayStation 4.
- 3 Out of 5 Stars
Very shaky start
Myriad of secrets
Release Date: 22nd February
Platform/s: PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita, Xbox One, Wii U, PC, Mac & iOS
- Song of the Deep
- PixelJunk Shooter
Yes, there's no bad language nor violence to speak of.
Outside of a start screen and end credits, Forma.8 contains no written language - though oddly does give you the option to change languages in the Options Menu.
Forma.8 boasts a platinum trophy on PlayStation systems, one obtained by unlocking all of its hidden secrets, one of which is an enhanced ending.