Alteric Review

Alteric is a single player, 2D puzzle platformer game created by Sometimes You. The aim of the game is to venture through the different platforming stages whilst solving various puzzles. This can be done by shifting between the two perspectives of each world.

Each perspective shows the player different obstacles and solutions, allowing you to complete levels more effectively. Alteric’s game style is a mixture between Badlands and Geometry Dash, creating an aesthetically dark puzzle platformer.

The game itself is split into chapters. Each chapter contains 10 levels and the last of which being a boss battle. As a small white cube, you progress throughout the game, the difficulty of each world increases. Each level challenges players in new ways by adding new challenges and obstacles to face. However, mistakes are unforgiving and deaths result in the player being put back to the beginning of the level.

The controls of the game are very simple but it’s the physics are what really adds to the challenge. The game contains gravity and momentum physics meaning that the way you move, spin or fall effects the way you land. This means that when you’re landing on a sloped surface, you can either slip down or land still. This is important to remember when progressing through levels.

The graphics of Alteric are smooth and reflex an art style of geometric pop art. The two perspectives contain gradient backgrounds, one blue and one orange and each is overlaid with the black silhouette styled foreground. The foreground contains the platforms and obstacles of which you, a small white square, must progress through. Your character also has a white trail that follows behind you making it easy to find your character on the map.

The music within the game consists of roughly 3-4 different electronica 8-bit styled beats that are looped. These add to the sense of urgency to progress through the levels.  The music continues even after deaths. However, the beats don’t always blend together smoothly and often cut out due to the change in pace or atmosphere of the track.

The sound effects are minimal but effective. Switching between perspectives of the world creates a wrapping noise that emphasizes the action and makes you feel like you’re warping into another dimension. Jumping in the game creates a human like grunt that doesn’t really fit the style of the game and as you’re a square, it seems unnecessary as there is nothing human like about the game.

The difficulty of the game is not to be taken lightly. It’s not always clear what path you have to take and some obstacles are oddly timed meaning that it can take several attempts to find the route that allows you to maneuver around effectively. However, after completing levels you do gain little sense of satisfaction and limited reward.

Deaths within the game are inevitable but unlike many 2D puzzle platformer, the deaths are not comedic but instead are frustrating, repetitive and time consuming. In many situations, you will most likely die several times to figure out an area or puzzle and the levels seems to be more difficult than the boss battles themselves, creating a sense of unbalance.

Throughout the game, there are some points that make you feel like it should still be in beta. Some obstacles, such as spinning spikes, faze through areas and it’s not clear whether this is intentional or a glitch. There are also some issues with switching between the perspectives as it should be instant. However, in some levels objects, such as lasers, are left behind for several seconds after switching between world and this can often lead to deaths. This too is unclear whether it is intentional.

Overall, Alteric is a 2D puzzle platformer game that has a beautiful art style and soundtrack. It is a game that presents you with challenges and tests your skills as a gamer. It is very much a ‘get good’ kind of game that has limited rewards and will cause games a lot of rage. The game has a lot of replayability due to the need of players wanting to complete the levels. Some of the level mechanics within the game are a little trial and error, which lead to a lot of unnecessary deaths. This game would be suited to someone who wants a challenge and isn’t afraid to scream their lungs out.

REVIEW CODE: A PS4 code was provided to Brash Games for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to editor@brashgames.co.uk.

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