Monday, December 8, 2014

Indie Impressions - Magnetic by Nature

Magnetic by Nature

Now Available on Steam

Developed by Team Tripleslash



A lone robot in a dead and unmoving future world, you find yourself amidst the rusted ruins of your robotic peers with only the power of magnetic energy to help you revive these elders to their former glory. Magnetic by Nature is a sidescrolling platformer with a magnetic driven twist, facing the player against complex chains of positive and negative reactions they must properly attract to and repel against in order to reach the end of each thoughtfully crafted stage.

Each of the large robot idols you must revive and unlock play host to a series of refreshingly difficult levels of their own colorful and entrancing environment. Guided by the shimmering melodies echoing with cave-like and natural qualities, droplets of water heard lightly dripping from hanging stalactites in the background. The game has beautiful and engaging surroundings that seem to live and breathe around you, with the glistening surfaces of twisting rock formations with occasional flocks of birds flying by all drawing you into the wonderfully relaxing mood of each differently themed setting.

Mere movement in Magnetic by Nature requires the sharpest wit and the quickest reactions, propelling yourself across wide cavernous gaps and attempting to quickly reverse polarity to catch yourself on another magnet and swing even further. As you learn the ropes of using your magnetic charge to slingshot yourself around each stage with ease, the momentum speeds up and swinging yourself across stages becomes an exhilarating trapeze act.

Often times the game moves far beyond mere platforming and into ingenious and accessible puzzle mechanics, having you push and pull magnetic orbs into proper slots or even through complicated stone mazes. Throughout the entirety of the game I was surprised with how fresh and engaging the new mechanics brought by each level were, never feeling same-y or overstaying its welcome.

The game quickly becomes intensely difficult, but in the best ways possible that offer an accessible challenge which always feels within your grasp.  What starts out as quick and clever manipulations of magnetic force in order to reach a nearby platform soon turns into long and complicated series of chained magnets strung above dangerous obstacles and deadly contraptions.

The retries will come swiftly, as you practice on perfecting the aim and arc of your propelled movements from each magnet to the next, timing your swings between them just right. It doesn't take long to figure out how to wield this unique mechanic, and completing the most puzzling labyrinth of magnets is always an incredibly rewarding feeling.

Magnetic by Nature is a game that deserves to discovered and played by a much wider audience. I'm ashamed I hadn't played it earlier myself, as it has proved to be one of the most pleasantly original platformers of the year. The consistently challenging and unusual mechanic of harnessing magnetic power to slingshot yourself to victory combined with an earthly atmosphere unsurpassed in its natural charm make this absolutely worth the admission.

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