Doublefine’s Robotic Bodysnatcher: Headlander

Headlander [official site] made me think of Wall-E, except there’s only one human left in the robot-run offworld colony. Technically, the bots are humans of a sort, the entire race having transferred their consciousness from its fleshy confines into new robotic bodies. Those robots are under the authority of a wicked computer and it’s up to the last meat-person (YOU) to save the day. Problem is, you’re outnumbered. Oh, and you don’t have a body. Cue body-switching, ability-gathering, side-scrolling action.

The game is a Double Fine production but will be published by Adult Swim. You might have seen a big video showing half an hour of the game a couple of weeks back, but this is a much more concise and snappy trailer, while still giving a good look at how the game will actually play. With some shooting and some puzzling and some platforming, that’s how it’ll play. To reach new areas or fight fresh batches of enemies, it’ll be necessary to transfer your head between bodies, allowing you to use their abilities.

It all looks very stylish, tapping into that retro sci-fi vibe that the title screen at the end exemplifies. Some of the jumping, dashing and shooting looks a little lightweight, but if that kind of motion serves the game when I’ve actually got a controller in my hands, it’ll barely register.

The Steam page says Headlander will be out this summer. If I look out of the window at the drizzle and the gray, summer seems any months away but I believe it has officially begun. Soon then. Edit: Late July in fact, as the trailer says. OPEN YOUR EYES, SMITH.


  1. Kreeth says:

    Still no date? Come on folks, looking forward to this one, get it together.

  2. mercyRPG says:

    Since the horrible DoubleFine Kickstarter fiasco I auto-avoid them, their games and any article that has the word DoubleFine in it. Purchases included of course. JSJK

    • Lars Westergren says:

      They one where they successfully created a game? Shocking.

    • Mollusc Infestation says:

      A little confused as to how you ended up here.

    • ThinkMcFlyThink says:

      Well, that’s clearly not true. But what a fiasco, right? They took longer to finish the game they committed to finishing, doing it in two parts instead of one.

    • Dare_Wreck says:

      C’mon guys, he clearly really means their Early Access fiasco with Spacebase DF-1, not the Kickstarter. (At least one commenter pops up in every Double Fine article about that very thing, saying the stance that MercyRPG presents here. Actually, for all I know since I’m not going digging through all the past articles, it could actually be MercyRPG saying this every time, not a different commenters)

      • Don Reba says:

        I had the same impression, but I just checked a bunch of past Double Fine articles, and only two of them complain about DF-9 in the comments section. Both complaints are by differently named people:

        SavannaJeff says:
        After the DF-9 saga, I’m never buying another DF product again.

        Cinek says:
        Another “jump on cash” from Double Fine? After buying Space Base DF9 I made myself a promise: Never buy anything from these scammers.

    • karthink says:

      “I auto-avoid any article that has the word DoubleFine in it”

      “Doublefine’s Robotic Bodysnatcher”

      Interesting use of “avoid”.

      • Robert The Rebuilder says:

        His post isn’t a contradiction – clearly he’s avoiding articles about “DoubleFine”. This article concerns “Doublefine”.

        Case matters.

  3. Nevard says:

    Double Fine have been a bit hit and miss for me but I have to admit that this game looks to be very much my kind of thing.

  4. RuySan says:

    I don’t know if there’s any goodwill with DF left. While their games show much promise, I never any much fun with any.

    I love metal, yet Brutal Legend was a bore.
    I love Point & Click adventures, and i found Broken Age completely mediocre. The art style is the only thing going for it.
    Psychonauts has a nice theme, but is very average on gameplay terms.

    I like turn based strategy, but never tried Massive Chalice due to so many negative reviews.

    • ThinkMcFlyThink says:

      I didn’t care for Brutal Legend, and also found Broken Age middling. However, I really enjoyed The Cave, Trenched (aka Iron Brigade), Stacking and the Costume Quest games. I never played Massive Chalice.

    • genoforprez says:

      I think a lot of DF’s biggest fans appreciate their story and style chops above everything else, since they do tend to be above average in that department. (Assuming their Saturday Morning Cartoon spirit is a flavor you enjoy.) When it comes to gameplay, they can be a little mediocre at times. I thought Broken Age was decent but not mind blowing. The Costume Quest games are cute and fun, but there’s not a whole lot to them in gameplay terms. Massive Chalice was okay but not mind blowing. Stacking was okay but not mind blowing. I think all of their “big little” games (i.e. anything coming out of Amnesia Fortnight or Kickstarter) are decent games, and are excellent in terms of style/character, but in gameplay terms feel like more mediocre versions of better games you’ve played.

      Psychonauts is 100% great, though, IMO.

    • Premium User Badge

      gritz says:

      I love multiplayer co-op shooters, but Iron Brigade is a nightmare to try to play with all of its unfixed connectivity and framerate bugs.

    • Urthman says:

      Psychonauts gameplay is fantastic, the best Mario-style 3D platformer you can get on PC. Name a better one.

  5. shagen454 says:

    Kind of reminds me of a platforming Logan’s Run (probably what they’re going for)

  6. Stevostin says:

    This look and sound pretty awespme. And I usually care little for platformers.