Review: Semblance (Nintendo Switch)

Semblance is an innovative platformer with deformable terrain, set in a beautiful minimalist world. It’s a game that asks, what if you could deform and reshape the world itself? Semblance takes the idea of a ‘platform’ in a platformer and turns it on its head.

Pros:

  • Lush abstract like graphic style.
  • 2.3GB Download size.
  • Puzzle platformer gameplay.
  • Tutorials scattered about the levels.
  • Very impactful yet strangely calming soundtrack.
  • Manipulate the world’s terrain! Dash into any solid filled piece of terrain to manipulate it and make a ledge or a maybe move a lasers trajectory.
  • Solid level design.
  • Actions- Jump, Dash, and pulse.
  • Pulse- Resets the terrain you are next to.
  • Your goal is to basically go into a corrupted tree, Collect spheres and cleanse the tree. You have the main hub world that opens up as you progress.
  • Vibrant background and foreground art.
  • So much fun to play.
  • Satisfying gameplay.
  • Instant respawns.
  • Generous with how much progress is saved when you die.
  • A story is told through a kind of cave drawing style. A lot of pictures.
  • So many different ways to complete the puzzles.
  • Difficult.
  • A world you want to explore.
  • Many inhabitants to see.
  • Fits the handheld well.
  • Vey simple three-button control layout.

Cons:

  • Initially hard to know what to do and where to go.
  • No touchscreen support.
  • Difficult.
  • No help in the game.
  • Never sure when the game has saved.
  • Little replayability.
  • Short game.

The Numbers:
  • 8/10
    Graphics - 8/10
  • 8/10
    Sound - 8/10
  • 8/10
    Accessability - 8/10
  • 7/10
    Length - 7/10
  • 8/10
    Fun Factor - 8/10
7.8/10

Summary

Despite what it looks like in pictures, This game is definitely more puzzle than platforming. This is what really sets the game apart from others in the genre. Who knew doing simple actions such as scenery manipulation could be so effective and rewarding, And that is just what it is, A rewarding different experience that tests your brain and makes you smile. Now it is a bit of a pig at the beginning as you master the controls and work out what your goal is but once that passes you are good for at least 5-7 hours (depends how brainy you are) of gameplay. In short, this puzzle game with platform elements is superb and plays really well, Its a beast at the start but soon turns into a whole different kind of beast.

Jim Smale

Gaming since the Atari 2600, I enjoy the weirdness in games counting Densha De Go and RC De Go as my favourite titles of all time. I prefer gaming of old where buying games from a shop was a thing, Being social in person was a thing. Join me as I attempt to adapt to this new digital age!

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