ElecHead is a kind of devilishly clever puzzle platformers that delights at each flip. Developed by solo dev NamaTakahashi, you play because the titular Elec, a tiny robotic whose physique can electrify no matter floor he touches, inflicting it to mild up a dazzling shade of yellow at the hours of darkness halls of a unusual, underground facility.
Technically, it is his head the place his electrical currents stem from, which you rapidly learn to throw to be able to flip switches from afar, create new platforms and dodge lethal obstacles to be able to get from one aspect of the room to the opposite. The catch? Elec’s physique solely has ten seconds of energy left when he is with out his head, inflicting him to blow up if he would not attain it in time. The result’s a stunningly good puzzle sport whose financial institution of brilliantly conceived concepts is executed to perfection, and it left me with a huge fats grin on my face for the entire of its three hour run-time.
Split throughout six loosely-defined levels that seamlessly mix into each other (and which you’ll warp again to at any time to mop up its twenty collectible calculators), ElecHead is a good instance of a sport that teaches by design. You study all the pieces it is advisable to know just by finishing and interesting with its completely paced puzzles. Most of them are contained in a single display screen, however typically they bleed over into different rooms as nicely, creating some correctly good interaction between ElecHead’s totally different environments.
To give only one early instance, you may come throughout a room, say, that accommodates a ground of spikes and lightbulbs chained on the ceiling. The solely manner ahead is to climb a set of platforms resulting in the room above. However, if you happen to step on a platform in that higher room that is chained to a lightbulb down under, you may trigger a lethal surge of insta-kill present to move by way of it, exploding Elec and sending him again to the final checkpoint (that are often generously situated initially of every puzzle). As a outcome, you may must clock which platforms have lightbulbs hooked up to them earlier than heading upstairs to be able to cross safely – and typically you may must chuck Elec’s head throughout first if the bounce’s too massive to cross with it hooked up.
Sure, this type of present do not inform method can typically go away you feeling a bit stumped in later ranges, particularly when there is not any textual content, trace system or something to allow you to skip forward to the following puzzle (heck, even the menus are all pictorial as nicely). There had been undoubtedly a few events the place I used to be staring dumbly on the display screen pondering, “How on earth do I presumably resolve this?” In a manner, although, I additionally love puzzle video games like this, as a result of it additionally makes me really feel like the neatest individual on the planet when the penny lastly drops. And man alive, that penny will drop a number of occasions over the course of ElecHead’s bite-sized play time, and there was one specific late-game revelation that had me applauding the ingenuity of all of it. Those warp factors aren’t only for present, of us, that is all I’m saying.
Thankfully, even while you do hit a non permanent brick wall in ElecHead, the reply is rarely far-off. This is not a sport the place you are chucking all the pieces on the wall to see what sticks, as you’ve got actually solely received one factor to throw – your individual head. As such, even its most elaborate puzzles should be solvable inside Elec’s ten second timeframe, giving all the pieces a sense of immediacy that different puzzle video games typically lack. Plus, the moment resetting on demise (and insta-kill button in your controller) makes it very simple to experiment and push in opposition to these tight restrictions when you’re figuring issues out.
Eventually, you may come to marvel at how a few of these puzzles are constructed across the precise timing of Elec’s head throw, with platform speeds completely matched to the transient second your charged noggin makes contact earlier than falling again right down to the bottom once more, alongside with different joyous run ‘n’ bounce moments which are too good to spoil right here. So a lot of ElecHead’s genius comes from the fun of fixing it, and describing it in any extra element right here would rob your mind of its personal valuable cog-turns.
Ultimately, ElecHead is simply an absolute deal with from begin to end. It’s clever, fantastically designed and it is all accompanied by a toe-tapping soundtrack by composer Tsuyomi. It’s an important buy for puzzle platforming connoisseurs, and a very good method to spend a night for lower than a tenner. It’s not typically I say this, however chucking your head in opposition to a brick wall has by no means been a lot enjoyable.