Terry Cavanagh is one of those rare designers who makes all of his own games by himself, aside from the music. As such, they are usually smaller titles with more simplistic art, though that simple pixel art often fits a cohesive style that makes it stand out anyway. While he usually makes platformers, like VVVVVV or Don’t Look Back, another game of his on Android, his latest foray into game development is this super challenging super unique game called Super Hexagon.
This is pure, skill based arcade gameplay at its best. You have the simple, tactile goal of rotating a small triangle around a center shape by touching the respective sides of your screen, as walls close in on that center shape from all sides. This shape starts out as a hexagon, but it can suddenly morph into a pentagon, square, or back into a hexagon. All the while, the entire game screen is fluctuating in rhythm with the totally bumpin’ soundtrack, always spinning, changing the direction of that spin, or just generally distorting so that one half of the screen becomes deceptively small. All of this is to throw you off of your game and test your reflexes and precision with the simple touch controls. Pro-tip: You can touch the sides of walls without harm, so use that knowledge to get through the trickier wall combos.
Game sessions will usually last under half a minute. It seems unnecessarily brutal at first, but the very short game sessions make it easy for you to measure your progress. And believe me when I say that with a bit of practice each day, your skill level will improve. Even if you only last ten more seconds than your previous run, it creates an incredibly proud sense of accomplishment. This is the genius of Super Hexagons design. It only gets more surprising when you realize that there are even harder difficulties to play on. In summation, Super Hexagon is a challenging, abstract, arcade game with a real sense of developing a skill as you play, plus psychedelic visuals and a repetitive but fantastic soundtrack to make it stand out. Definitely give this one a shot, even if your tolerance for failure isn’t all that high. You might surprise yourself. Also, check out Terry Cavanagh’s other games while you’re at it!
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