Gamasutra’s Indie GOTY Is Give Up Robot 2

Wow, this game slipped under our radar like a stealth fighter carrying a payload of Fun Bombs. Give Up Robot 2 is a browser platformer that Gamasutra picked as their favourite indie game of 2010 (with games like Minecraft, Super Crate Box, Super Meat Boy and Desktop Dungeons following close behind), and having had a quick play I can slap the RPS “STRONG” stamp on it too. The first Give Up Robot was a psychadelic, taxing little thing with a fun grappling hook mechanic, but the sequel is as whip-smart a platformer as I’ve ever seen. Go play!

It’s all a little bit perfect. The music’s lovely. The visual design is lovely. The writing’s often laugh-out-loud funny. The actual grapple mechanic is easy to learn, hard to master and routinely coughs up near-accidental displays of incredible skill where you blitz a level in moments, and these are always followed by a flush of pride. In all of these senses, it’s more than a little reminiscent of RPS favourite VVVVVV. If you haven’t grabbed the demo of that yet, oh my goodness, you really should.


  1. BigglesB says:

    FlashPunk yay!

  2. Lipwig says:

    Years of Spelunky has hardwired my brain into Z as jump. With jump as X and Z as grapple it’s making me feel like I’m playing right-handed.

    • jplayer01 says:

      Bleh, years of FPS gaming have burned the spacebar as jump into my mind. This is so confusing. x_X

    • Omroth says:

      Years of gaming caused me to buy a gamepad and Glovepie!

    • Rane2k says:

      Years of FPS gaming have assigned the right mouse button to “jump” in my brain. (which trips me up in Bulletstorm at the moment, there is no jump key there ^^)

      I´m also frequently annoyed by the X/Z combination in indie games… german keyboard here. (I know I can switch to english keyboard with a hotkey, it´s still annoying)

  3. Bhazor says:

    Yay! Maybe not the best or most important indie of last year but with Minecraft and selling a bajillion copies it would seem almost wrong to give it the best indie award as well.
    Also this had some of the best videogame music of the last year in it.

  4. BigJonno says:

    Grappling hooks and jet packs? Oh my!

  5. Pani says:

    Was fun for 30 mins, then found level 39 to be a bugger. That’s about my limit.

    • Lilliput King says:

      Me too! It was like a cheerless version of Runman with worse music.

    • snitchy says:

      got to level 44 or so and quit. fun for a while though!

    • SackManDoo says:

      Yes 39 was not happening

    • Premium User Badge

      Waltorious says:

      @Liliput King:

      You are aware, I hope, that Give Up Robot and Give Up Robot 2 are by Matt Thorson, the same man who made the Runman games?

      I highly recommend his other games as well… they’re more in the vein of Super Meat Boy (although Super Meat Boy was released afterwards). In particular I recommend FlaiL and Moneyseize. The Jumper series is good too but they’re older games. Also An Untitled Story is like a mix of the hardcore platforming with a metroidvania, and is rather excellent.

    • Lilliput King says:

      Yup, recognised the name. I think Runman was a collaboration, though.

  6. Urthman says:

    Reminds me of Rocket: Robot on Wheels, one of the best 3D platformers ever made (and a pretty clear inspiration for Psychonauts).

    link to

  7. ghost4 says:

    “The visual design is lovely.”

    It looks like shit. Does its indie status blind you to such an obvious, readily apparent flaw?

    How typical that the winner was yet another puzzle platformer (with awful graphics). I liked the grappling thing better when it was called Bionic Commando. I haven’t played SMB but it would seem to be light years ahead of this game. To say nothing of Minecraft.

    Hero Core got second place only because of its hip “retro” aesthetics. No doubt about it.

    • PleasingFungus says:


    • Urthman says:

      I like the graphics.

      I tried playing Bionic Commando Rearmed, but while it looked fantastic, the control was too fiddly and frustrating. Give Up Robot 2 feels great, and the VVVVVV-type restarts at the beginning of every level means it can be challenging without tons of boring backtracking (which is what really killed Bionic Commando Rearmed for me — how can there not be an infinite lives hack for that game?)

    • ghost4 says:

      Rearmed is terrible. I was referring to the NES game.

    • Urthman says:

      Yeah, but I hate the NES and arcade versions for the exact same reasons.

  8. Olivaw says:

    l liked it, particularly the graphics and the music, but yeah, certain levels near the end were a total fucking bitch and I’m not one of those people who values challenge in games as some sort of personal growth experience. The only sensation I got upon completing a level was relief that I’d never have to play it again, not pride or enjoyment or anything. If I figured out what I had to do ten minutes ago and the only reason I haven’t beaten it is because I keep making microscopic mistakes, that’s not much fun at all.

    I value puzzling and platforming both on their own, but combined I guess I value puzzling more and it cancels out the platforming fun.

    Or maybe the puzzle platforming genre is just filled with masochists and sadists.

  9. Jim9137 says:

    I don’t care about what people say
    Clouds shouting Hold me is like my pill
    I’ll guide my laughing love rocket to your depths
    While the rocket says I hope you have a plan

    Suck it, robot