Super Gravitron Review

Super Gravitron Review

Jun 25, 2014

Alongside VVVVVV, Terry Cavanagh released Super Gravitron, a free version of a mode in VVVVVV. This game has some interest to it, particularly as it’s from the creator of Super Hexagon, but this game should be regarded more as an interesting free curiosity than as the next great high score game, which it is not meant to be.

When I beat VVVVVV on the 3DS a couple years ago, I thought “the only way this game is coming to mobile is if Terry Cavanagh just makes the Super Gravitron mode as an app,” and I was both wrong and right: wrong in that the dude was crazy enough to make the full game for mobile (and making it actually work pretty well!), but right in that the game is a good fit for mobile. It just involves moving left and right, bouncing between two wires that bounce Captain Viridian back to the other side. It’s possible to warp between the two sides, though this can make the ol’ Captain prone to spawning hazards.

SuperGravitron-3

This game is very hard. But so was Super Hexagon. But there’s a big difference in the difficulty of the two games. Super Hexagon is designed to be hard, but in a fair way. It presents an immense challenge, but there’s some predictability. This is a lot more chaotic: patterns of hazards come quite randomly, and my high score even after hundreds of sessions is still just 9 seconds. Of course, this does make the game highly replayable: it’s possible to play a lot in a few minutes. As well, the auto-respawning helps out a lot with getting back into games. There’s a second break, then it’s back to the action. Other games could take a lesson from this. Sadly, there’s no Google Play high scores, but there’s no ads or anything of the sort. This is just a free game, and it’s hard to complain about it too much. Plus, it has one of Souleye’s tracks from VVVVVV‘s wonderful soundtrack.

Essentially, this was meant as just a free toy of sorts, something that would fit on mobile, and it’s certainly entertaining enough, but it does show: even simple games usually have a lot of work put into them, and there can be a colossal difference between a fun toy, and a great game like Super Hexagon.

VVVVVV Review

VVVVVV Review

Jun 12, 2014

At last, Terry Cavanagh’s VVVVVV, the game he was known for before the multi-platform hit Super Hexagon, has finally come to mobile. And though it may be an ultra-challenging platformer that would seem like an odd fit for touchscreens, it works incredibly well.

VVVVVV puts players in control of Captain Viridian, who can do two things: walk along the ground and reverse gravity, which becomes the way to move around. There’s no jumping – and there’s one moment in particular that will make players wish they had a jump button – so mastering how the gravity-flipping works is key. Learning how to move in mid-air, timing to move between obstacles, moving between different screens, this game will put players to the test. Thankfully, it’s an open-world game and non-linear. There are no powers of any sort to collect, as in a Metroidvania-type game, so any part of the game world can be explored (though there are certain sections that pop up as certain milestones are reached) at any time. The only thing holding the player back is skill.

VVVVVV Review 5

The big concern with VVVVVV on mobile had to be the touchscreen question. Namely, given that this is a game where precision is necessary, would it prove to just be extremely frustrating to play? I won’t lie, there are some times where I feel like the touch controls made me move too little or too far. But the game is also extremely forgiving: checkpoints are frequent, and death is such a natural part of the experience that really, any death for being slightly inaccurate is just going to feel like every other death for screwing up the timing. But the touchscreen controls work incredibly well, otherwise, to where the game feels quite playable with them. I don’t expect anyone to be doing any no-death runs or world-record speedruns on the mobile version, but I know that the things which make VVVVVV great will get across. Plus, hey, there’s gamepad support.

And VVVVVV is great because it’s such a skill game that also is player-friendly. There are few artificial barriers, and any challenge is innately conquerable through skilled play alone. It can be frustrating to not be good enough, but with practice, anything is possible. VVVVVV is a rare breed in this sense: so many games block off players through artificial barriers, needing an item of some sort to get past, and VVVVVV instead gives players all they need to survive right from the beginning.

VVVVVV Review 4

The first playthrough of VVVVVV may take about 3-4 hours depending on how good one is and how comfortable the controls are, but the challenge makes for an extremely rewarding experience. There’s 20 trinkets to collect throughout the world, which serve as real tests of skill to collect. As well, there’s various time trials, the Super Gravitron mini-game (also available as a separate app) and a variety of player worlds to explore, so VVVVVV can last a long time. It’s one of my favorite platforming games of the modern era, being so wonderfully-designed. For those who can handle touchscreen controls, this is a wonderful game to have on the go. If touchscreen controls are a dealbreaker, there’s gamepad support, an Ouya version, and of course the versions for PC platforms, 3DS, and upcoming the Vita. Play this game on some format!

Super Gravitron, a Free Mini-Game Based on VVVVVV, Coming to Android

Super Gravitron, a Free Mini-Game Based on VVVVVV, Coming to Android

Jun 11, 2014

When he announced the release date for VVVVVV, Terry Cavanagh also announced that a “surprise” was coming along with it. That surprise has been revealed: Super Gravitron. Based on a mode available in the full game, this is a standalone free app where players try to survive flipping between two different sides of the screen as long as possible as dangerous blocks come in from each side. Good luck surviving: this might just make Super Hexagon look like a walk in the park. Super Gravitron should be available tomorrow when VVVVVV is available.

VVVVVV Coming to Android This Thursday

VVVVVV Coming to Android This Thursday

Jun 10, 2014

VVVVVV is coming this week to Android. Confirmed by Terry Cavanagh, Android and Ouya players will be flipping their way through the topsy-turvy open world later this week. Along with the entirety of this modern classic, there’s a second “surprise” coming from developer Terry Cavanagh around with it. We’ll have a review this Thursday. Until then, read our impressions of the iOS version.

Terry Cavanagh’s Gravity-Flipping Platformer VVVVVV Coming to Android in 2014

Terry Cavanagh’s Gravity-Flipping Platformer VVVVVV Coming to Android in 2014

Jan 8, 2014

Fan of Super Hexagon? Well, Terry Cavanagh made a great game before that, the Metroidvania-esque gravity-flipping platformer VVVVVV. The game has been on PCs and 3DS for a while now, but mobile devices have been left out in the cold. But not for much longer, as Cavanagh has confirmed on his blog that VVVVVV‘s mobile port will be finished in 2014 with release on Android and Ouya. No release date is known other than “this year.” Cavanagh’s blog has some screens of other nifty projects he’s working on, some of which could well make their way to mobile…

Indie Developer Terry Cavanagh Debuts on Android with Don’t Look Back and the Upcoming Super Hexagon

Noted indie developer Terry Cavanagh, most known in the gaming world for creating VVVVVV, is starting to release some of his games for Android. First is a short 2009 title called Don’t Look Back, a mysterious monochrome game that has players surviving tricky platforms and wild animals, for a purpose that seems unclear at first but unfolds throughout the game. The game is extremely challenging, and it isn’t helped by the tiny virtual buttons on the screen on high-resolution phones. It’s worth sticking with to experience it, and it’s got plenty of challenge along the way. It’s available for free from Google Play.

That’s really just the start, as Super Hexagon, his mobile revamp of Flash title Hexagon is making its way from iOS to Android. The game will support a limited but popular set of resolutions natively, as according to his tweets (which he later clarified to add in 1280×720 for the modern Galaxy line of phones), while the rest will scale. The game is an incredibly-challenging survival title that I rated 4.5 stars out of 5 on 148Apps. This is one to look forward to. No release date yet, but Terry Cavanagh works in Flash (and Don’t Look Back appears to have been a test release for Flash to Android) so it could be coming soon-ish once all the bugs are stamped out.