On the face of it, Spiral Splatter is a hugely simple game. And even when you get deep into the action, Spiral Splatter is still a hugely simple game.
With the use of one button and the movement of one thumbstick, all that is required is for you to safely navigate your small disc across multiple levels and hit the end goal that is in place. Whilst that is probably true for a whole host of titles from the puzzle genre, there really can’t be many more games that go about it in such an uncomplicated style as Sometimes You have done with this spiral splattering premise.
And your first few minutes of Spiral Splatter will make you wonder how and why something so basic has made its way onto the super powerful consoles that control this generation of gaming.
But what makes Spiral Splatter fun – and eventually a little tricky – is the fact that you are up against a very strict time limit for each stage, and plenty of walls and obstacles that cannot be touched. Should you not manage to make par for the course, then you’ll find yourself heading back in and repeating the same old stages over and over again in the hope that you can shave milliseconds off. It is when you manage to do just that, then you will be able to pick up enough of the required stars in order to unlock further stages. That is when you will become a true Spiral Splatterer. Just expect to die countless times in the process.
With super simple, brilliantly sharp and highly crisp visuals accompanied by a soothing soundtrack, this is most certainly a game for those late night relaxation moments. Nothing will wow you with Spiral Splatter, and things are certainly never too taxing, but you’ll enjoy it nonetheless. In fact, aside from a couple of the tricky mid-term stages which will see you dying time and time again, you’ll find yourself whizzing through the 100 odd puzzles in just an hour or two.
The vast majority of these will see you moving from the left side of the screen to the right, as fast as you can, as you utilise the one button mechanic to speed your ball up. And that is pretty much it for the first couple of openers, but further mechanics bring in timed buttons to hit, bullets to dodge, warp holes to confuse, electrified gates to work your way around, and eventually a ghost ball which you’ll need to race to the exits. A damn ghost ball that gets a head start every single time!
It all works well too. Movement is fluid, respawning after failure is super swift and the puzzles have been cleverly created without ever leaving you frustrated. In fact, there is little to dislike about the ease in which you’ll get addicted to Spiral Splatter, but in the same breath once you get the hand-eye coordination that is required for each stage down to a tee, you’ll find yourself flying through things with the greatest of ease, left instead to wonder what else the game ever brings. Honestly, other than running back over a couple of stages in order to grab the two and three star rewards that entice you in, beating ever decreasing par times in the process, that is pretty much your lot with this most casual of puzzlers.
But hey, for just £3.99, what more should we expect? There aren’t many games out there in this world that deliver any kind of experience for that low price point and it should be commended of Sometimes You for continuing to drop well created, cleverly designed games out at such tempting pocket money levels.
However, all that said, it is that same simplicity, and that same design technique, which wants me to see Spiral Splatter push the envelope just a tad more. Whilst being able to rock up and crack out the completion of 106 levels, the entirety of a game and a shed load of Achievements in just a couple of hours may well sound appealing, I’ve been left frustrated that there isn’t more to get involved in. It may not sit well with the whole pricing structure that Sometimes You are seemingly happy to embrace, but just dropping a couple of quid on to the purchase price and a further selection of interesting levels would have been hugely appreciated.
As it is, Spiral Splatter is a simple game. However it’s also a good one that is brilliantly priced and should see any puzzle fan kept happy for an hour or two. I just wish it could deliver much more!