Enough time has passed for most of us to have forgotten about Shadow Of The Beast. The world is ready, once again, for a platformer that looks like a Roger Dean album cover given life and Planet Alpha (developed by a team of the same name) certainly looks the part. It’s out now.
In Planet Alpha, a lone, lost space-person wanders through an alien world, solving puzzles and doing a whole lot of running, jumping and dodging lasers. It all looks a bit like Limbo, but fills me with nostalgia for the angular, harsh and otherworldly art of Another World. See what I mean in the launch trailer below.
From the little bit of Planet Alpha that I’ve seen on launch streams today, it is very much in the style of Limbo – especially when you’re dying. The image bleeds colour when you’re taking damage, and goes fully monochrome when you croak. A sad choice, considering the overwhelmingly vibrant palette it paints its world in. While detailed textures are used sparingly, the thick swathes of blues, greens, reds and purples are entrancing, and even if I do end up dying a hundred times I want to at least wander once through its candy-coated murderworld.
I bet you want more of that, so here’s another trailer, full of colourful peril. Don’t say I never do anything for you.
The big mechanical twist of Planet Alpha is a strange power picked up some ways into the game. You can alter the time of day around you, and much of the planet’s flora, fauna and merciless killbot population react to these shifts. Spin (the planet) to win, as they say.
Planet Alpha is out now on Steam and Humble for £16/$20/$20, and is published by Team 17. Being Team 17’s 100th released game, Planet Alpha also comes with a free copy of Worms Armageddon. When you’re done enjoying the scenery, you can blow it up.