Compelling paper-made puzzle platformer
When a game has been described as ‘stylized’ or ‘unique’, it generally means it’s been designed to be very slightly differently to its competitors, but essentially it follows the same line. However, Yet It Moves is a genuine original concept – and it looks gorgeous. Once you get used to the whole torn paper thing, at least.
You start the game with instructions of the basics of movement. Tap and hold each side of the screen to walk in that direction, and tap again while moving that way to jump. The controls don’t feel amazingly responsive, but the game isn’t intended to be played like Super Mario Bros. Reacting to an incoming object in a split-second and adjusting course midflight to avoid it just isn’t a thing here.
In YIM, you need to stop time and re-orient the level to suit your needs. By dragging in a circular motion, the game pauses, and you can rotate the level. This can be used to pick up speed, fit through small gaps, or to move objects in the environment. Often, this results in you bringing a rock crashing down on your head – to hilarious effect. Fortunately, there are frequent checkpoints and limitless lives. Experimentation is encouraged.
As mentioned, everything in the game is hand-drawn or made to look as though it were torn from a larger sheet of paper. It’s interesting and a nice change from the regular ‘stylized graphics’ that are often just cutified cartoons. The developers were looking to make a game that stands out, and they succeeded. Your character is a cut-out trying to make it back to the piece of paper from which he was made. Upon doing so, the pieces fuse together and the level concludes.
The soundscape is weird – It’s difficult to know what to make of it. It’s very experimental, and may in some cases not reflect what’s happening. The lizards in the game sound suspiciously human. The music can’t really be put into a genre, and it’s often fairly minimalist. It must be said that it suits the game’s somewhat ‘trippy’ vibe.
The game becomes psychedelic in the later levels. Colors are wildly varied and the ways in which certain objects react to the time-stopping feature begins to change. Some of the platforms rotate alongside you, meaning you have to resort to regular running and jumping *gasp*, and some areas of the level will only appear while your character is in a certain orientation. Some of the best, yet challenging, puzzles are the ones in which there is a copy of your character making equal and opposite motions to you on the other end of a maze-like structure. Your down is his up, your left his right, etc.
It’s like the rug is being pulled from under you, leaving you to explore the rules all over again. It’s brilliant, because it makes the game’s simple set of mechanics become fresh again when otherwise you might start to get bored.
From purchase to completion (reaching the credits, not completing the ‘Epilog’), the game took about three hours. Some people might call that too short, but at no point is the player left feeling that it’s getting old. There is a story arc to it as well, albeit a heavily metaphorical one.
Yet It Moves is ideal for iOS users who love platforming games, but are getting tired of the status quo. It’s a fresh take on an old genre; turning over a new leaf, if you will.
Price: $2.99 / £2.29
Size: 73.9 MB
Platform: iOS Universal
Developer: DeNA Co.