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Platformica Reviewed by Cyril Lachel on . Platformica is an example of a young developer taking on a notoriously tricky type of platformer and bungling it every step of the way. From the bland setting to the frustrating mechanics to the laggy gameplay, there's not much here I liked. Instead of ripping your hair out playing Platformica, I recommend booting up those first two Jumping Flash games and never looking back. Rating: 10%
Platformica
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  • Review Score:

  • D-
With the possible exception of Jumping Flash and Mirror's Edge, most first-person action games don't handle platforming especially well. This camera perspective may be good for shooting at aliens rushing from all sides, but everything falls apart the moment you're expected to make precise jumps over bottomless pits. Platformica is a brand new platformer that takes the worst part of first-person games and builds an entire game around it. The results are every bit as bad as you can imagine.

Despite my pessimism, I'm not opposed to this type of platformer. Crafty developers have proven that it's possible to jump around in the first-person and still keep track of where you're landing. But Platformica doesn't make any effort to turn first-person platforming a pleasurable experience. In fact, it seems to go out of its way to make your time as miserable as possible. From the laggy gameplay to baffling stage designs, this is a game actively working against you every step of the way.


Platformica is a fairly straight-forward affair where we attempt to solve a series of puzzles while precariously standing way up in the sky. We're given a path of colorful blocks to walk across, each leading to different parts of the expansive level. The goal is to pick up a series of gems in order to open up new paths and puzzles. But beware, because one wrong step will send you plummeting to your death.

This is the type of game where you'll need to negotiating floating platforms, harrowing leaps and blocks that disappear without warning. And if you can survive all that, you'll be rewarded with an even tougher group of obstacles to overcome -- such as invisible blocks that require a lot of trial and error. It's not a terrible premise for a game, but the execution here is all wrong.

Platformica (Steam)Click For the Full Picture Archive

As bad as first-person platforming normally is, it's made so much worse with laggy and unresponsive gameplay. There's a noticeable delay between pressing the button and seeing our hero jump. This is a game build around making pinpoint accurate jumps, so precise gameplay is an absolute must. But that's definitely not what you get here. The loose controls and laggy input makes it nearly impossible to play with any kind of precision, and I often felt like my nameless character was drunk and running on a broken foot.

Part of the reason why games like Jumping Flash and Mirror's Edge were able to get the first-person platforming right is because they knew you had to see where you were landing. Those were games that made a concerted effort to let you know where you were in relation to the world around you. Platformica makes no such effort. I never got the sense that the developers did any kind of research to figure out what gamers need from this type of first-person experience. They just made a traditional first-person game and set it over a bottomless pit.

Platformica (Steam)Click For the Full Picture Archive

The good news is that a lot of these issues can be resolved through patches that tighten up the gameplay and reduce the lag. But I would go one step further, adding a simple rewind button that reverses all of my terrible jumps. As it stands, this is a game that punishes you for things outside of your control, which is just one of the many reasons why Platformica is one of the year's most frustrating outings.

It's also worth pointing out how awful the level designs are. It's the kind of puzzle game where you can get completely stuck and have to start over from the very beginning. When important platforms drop, they stay missing until you either fall ten times or start the stage over from scratch. Even in the first level, there are way too many dead ends where the only way out is to commit suicide. Every level feels like it was created at random with no care put into the player having a good time.

This is an example of a young developer taking on a notoriously tricky type of platformer and bungling it every step of the way. From the bland setting to the frustrating mechanics to the laggy gameplay, there's not much here I liked. Instead of ripping your hair out playing Platformica, I recommend booting up those first two Jumping Flash games and never looking back.
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