Whisper it, but I think Jumpgrid might be almost as good as Super Hexagon. It’s another 2D dodge ’em up, plunging you into a world of murderous patterns and snake-like reflexes. Tap tap tap. Die die die. Try again, again, and again.
It’s not out until February 12th, but I played a preview build last night. I’m never going to play Jumpgrid before bed again, but I’m sure as (bullet)hell going to play more today.
It’s simple stuff. Collect nodes from every spot on a grid, reach the central exit, and you’re done. That might take you less than three seconds.
I bet it won’t take you less than three seconds.
I like much about this that Hexagon lacks. Chiefly, you can approach each level as you see fit. I’m already working on a thesis/hit Buzzfeed article about the three different types of Jumpgrid players and what deep inner truths that reveals about their personalities.
You’ve got the rushers, eager to abuse movement that lets them hop about as quickly as they can hammer each button. You’ve got the planners, who sit back and plot routes until they know hazards as well as the backs of their balletic hands. Then you’ve got warpers, a snootier breed of planner that somehow makes full use of the wrap-around screen. They are the scariest, and the most likely to hide affection from their loved ones.
I’ve played for 15 minutes and I’m apparently 20% of the way through the game, but that’s misleading. I haven’t even left the first colour pallet, but almost five of those minutes were spent on the most recent level. It was a bastard of a twisting helix, or a jagged descending ladder, or sometimes a mix of both as my eyes bounced off the lurid deathtrap time and time again. Success was bliss.
You know that shiver you get down the back of your spine as you’re running away from a monster in a horror game? The profound relief when you make it to safety? Jumpgrid has that. It’s surreal.
Developer Ian MacLarty is no stranger to high-quality surrealism. He’s already taken us on kaleidoscopic woodland journeys in Forests Are For Trees, satisfying tile shuftying in Dissembler, and nightmarish fever dreams in Catacombs Of Stellaris.
Jumpgrid will be available February 12th on Steam for £3.99/€3.99/$4.99.