Remember Thomas Was Alone? You know, the one with the coloured blocks but they had personalities and stuff? It was adorable, wasn’t it? Well now it’s time for you to meet Thomas’ older brother, Alteric. Alteric isn’t adorable however. Alteric is mean. Alteric is ‘Thomas Was Alone meets Dark Souls‘. You have been warned….
When I referenced Thomas Was Alone, I wasn’t kidding. Alteric looks incredibly similar, and the developers are fully aware of this, even putting Thomas in the game at one point (if you look carefully enough). If you’ve played that aforementioned game you’ll know visually what to expect here. Minimalistic yes, but it works, and it’s aided by some cool, ambient electronic music too. So Alteric looks good and sounds good. It’s also only £4.49, so the price is good too. But does it play good? Thankfully yes. All your standard 2D platforming tricks are here – jump, double jump, try not to die and so on. But where the game comes into its own is its switching world mechanic. If you can’t see a way across, Tap Y and you will switch worlds. This will cause other platforms to appear. Great! But the platform you’re currently standing on might disappear. Oh…
Don’t worry though, Alteric is meant to be hard. You’re a tiny little block and you’re trying to avoid boiling lava, saw blades and lasers for heaven’s sake. It’s fair to say dying a lot comes with the territory. That’s why the game only has 30 levels (10 in each of the 3 chapters). Most levels don’t have a checkpoint either, so you’re really gonna have to learn what you’re doing here. There’s no blagging this one. But that’s actually the really cool thing about Alteric – when you complete the game (if you make it that far) you’ll know it was pure skill, practise and patience that got you there.
And boy oh boy will you need patience. Alteric is horribly difficult at times (screw you, level 24!) but it’s perfect for dipping in and out of, and this is mostly down to none of the levels being too long. Furthermore, the difficulty is broken up slightly by each chapter’s final level being a bossfight. In fact, it’s actually the first time I’ve encountered a game where the bossfight’s are easier than the rest of the game. I use the word ‘easy’ loosely however…
Alteric is a challenging yet rewarding platformer that is worth adding to your Nintendo Switch collection – just try not to break your controller.
Punk rating: 7.5/10