A hit with fans of difficult games, BLACKHOLE is a platformer that really is very, very hard. Your ship has crashed around a black hole and you, the guy who makes coffee for the crew, will have to save the world! You’ll be confronted with shifting gravity, jumping to bounce off surfaces and using your momentum to reach the next platform. A witty, cynical AI is there to help you.
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Fancy a 2D sci-fi platformer with a unique plot, great soundtrack, and sarcastic voiceover?
Well, come with us aboard a spaceship on a mission to close every black hole out there. But this is a dangerous one-way mission, even for the guy who makes the coffee for the crew (that’s you!)
And unluckily for you, your ship almost immediately crash lands on an Entity: an object resembling a planet. With assistance from a caustic AI, you’ll need to repair your ship by collecting the black boxes and nanorobots you’ll find scattered throughout the game. The game begins like a movie trailer, and we advise you to spend plenty of time getting some training in on the first level, which serves as a tutorial.
Every area of the planet you will be exploring is divided into 130 very challenging missions, where "die & retry" will be the order of the day. Some of the nanorobots you need will be hidden in areas that are impossible to reach, and you’ll need to invert gravity if you’re to nab them. When you do this, the whole level rotates, and the floor becomes the ceiling. Add in a bit of lava, ice, and plenty of different traps, and you’ll have your work cut out for you. You’ll soon come to see that getting back to the start of the level to complete it is a hellish task.
Our advice? If the puzzles are too challenging, give Easy mode a try, just know that this will remove some objectives and victories from the game. And if the story isn’t your cup of tea, you can also choose between modes with full dialogue, less dialogue, or even no dialogue (but that would mean missing out on the game’s sense of humour, delivered by a chatty and sarcastic AI).
We particularly liked the hand drawn environments, and BLACKHOLE’s graphics are truly beautiful for a 2D platformer.
The publisher of BLACKHOLE, 1C Company, describes its game as a "hardcore puzzle platformer", and we can only agree! Even though it’s "just" a platform game, this is one for motivated gamers looking for puzzles that don’t always make sense at first glance.