Switch version tested
Review code provided
Seriously, where do I start with this crazy game! When I picked this game up my initial thoughts were that it didn’t look much and it was a throwback from the ZX Spectrum, oh how wrong I was! Slime-san is a fast-paced 2D platformer which will delight and frustrate at the same time. With plenty of content to keep you engaged, let’s dig in.
The premise of this game is that you are a little green slime ball which has been devoured by a giant evil worm. The contents of the worm’s stomach is host to 100 levels of gameplay for our green hero, Slime-San. You’d be right in thinking that is a bit weird but that’s what this game is, a bit weird, a bit quirky. It really adds to what is basically a very good platforming game. The strange environment adds various features and challenges to the game, one of which is a pulsating border around the screen which looks like the lining of the stomach. This aids in engrossing you in the gameplay while giving off a creepy, uneasy feeling. The game can get quite intense and it really draws you in, which is surprising considering its pixelated graphics style and tri-colour palette.
Each level is broken up into four chambers, in which you have to get to the checkpoint. Simple enough? Well sometimes, and other times it will seem impossible! To add to the difficulty there is also the option to collect the impossibly placed apples, which is a great way of ramping up the difficulty if you chose. These apples can be redeemed for extra abilities or character customisation. There are also secret coins to collect on the way which are not always apparent. The place to redeem said tokens is in Slumptown, a little town within the worm where you will find shops and other worm survivors.
The graphics and music in this game are really fun. On the first glimpse, the graphics look basic. On closer inspection you can see it has many layers and textures, a detail which can be seen in its gameplay. This pixelated style is really fun, giving the game a retro feel, along with the well-composed music.
When taking on Slime-san’s challenges, speed is of the essence. If you take too long then red stomach acid will rise which will promptly kill poor Slime-San. Fear not though, as the little green slime has countless lives with which to take on the challenge of the worm. The rising stomach acid is a great mechanic, as it encourages speed and also forces you to take the risks needed without too many consequences. In fact, the game has a speedrunner mode and definitely encourages this dynamic. In addition, there is a boss rush mode and test rooms which just adds to the already high content.
I must admit when I first controlled Slime-san I found it a little awkward as you have to use the L and R triggers a lot in order to utilise his various abilities. He is able to morph through green walls, dash mid-air, as well as other variations as the game goes on. These abilities are used constantly which enabled me to get used to the controls fairly quickly, and what with the intensity of the game you soon forget about it. The mechanics of his movements are a dream, which is always needed for platformers of this type.
What I love about indie games, and this is where the developer Fabraz has excelled, is that so much love and effort has been put into creating the experience. It oozes real personality, no matter how strange, with a quirkiness that shines through every element. The result is a unique gaming experience that doesn’t break the bank and with extra content promised in the form of free DLC you can’t go wrong.
This game is a real delight and one which Fabraz and Headup Games should be proud of. If you like platformers that are a little different, and a little strange then you’ll love this game as much as I did. I can’t wait for the DLC so I can delve back in and see what else the team has come up with. This game is so cheap you’d be mad not to pick it up, and you won’t be disappointed.
TBG Score: 8.5/10
Platform: Nintendo Switch
Release Date: 03/08/2017
No. of Players: 1
Category: Adventure, Action, Platformer
Publisher: Headup Games
Download link: eShop