By Josh Speer / September 4th, 2013
There was only a few games at PAX Prime 2013 that forced me to stop walking and stare in wonder at them, and one of these was Electronic Super Joy. Developed by Michael Todd Games, and designed by him and Cassie Chui, with rocking techno music by Envy, it was a sight to behold. Hardcore retro, with the hero little more than a pixelated silhouette with eyes, it instantly captivated me.
The music was so irresistible I was forced to buy both music CDs to personally own, and the gameplay was solid and uncompromising, in a good way. The sound effects were also crisp and passionate, including the sound of “extreme satisfaction” that occurs when you reach a checkpoint. Not the mention the crazy plot, which seems to involve a wizard stealing the hero’s butt with magic ( not joking ). The full game looks to be 45 levels, including boss encounters.
As for my personal experience with it, I found the controls to be quite effective. You run, you jump and you escape the constantly panning background. From what I saw, you gradually learn new abilities, such as wall jumps, double jumps and ground stomps. Furthermore, by jumping into arrows that point up, you are thrust upwards, and by getting to the squiggly lines, you’ll teleport from one to the other.
The level that best exemplified the difficulty and beauty of the game was what I call the black and white strobe level. The whole level was completely dark, with the exception of a rotating white sun that casts rays of illumination rapidly. Besides this, the only thing you can see are the white jump arrows and squiggly lines. Even the ground beneath your feet was cast in shadow – and it was glorious.
Electronic Super Joy is available now for Windows, Mac and Linux, with versions to be released later for iPad and Android. Though I would love to see it on my 3DS, many others can enjoy it. In closing, I’ll leave you with this trailer, which should give you some idea of what you’ll be getting into if you buy it.
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