Sure Footing is an infinite runner crossed with plenty of platforming action. This means you’ll be sprinting non-stop from one side of the screen to the other, whilst trying to navigate an aerial assault course filled with obstacles.
Your task is to guide Pixel Pete and his cutesy cubic companions through an endless assortment of blocks, ramps, chasms and boost pads in a bid to save their world from extinction. You are forever being pursued by Deletion Dave, who is doing the bidding of the evil Ramrafstar. Between them they are trying to destroy your homeworld of Computra. I’m not really sure how, but it’s all the setup you need to get started.
What helps to keep the action fresh, is the fact that the levels are procedurally generated, meaning that each differs from the last in terms of how they are structured. Replayability is at the core of Sure Footing, with you unlocking all sorts as you play. Keeping you coming back for more each time is vitally important for the lifespan of the game. And for the most part, it works.
Running, jumping and avoiding the hands of Deletion Dave is simple enough, however there are a few niggles that crop up from time to time. You can only grab onto flat surfaces, not ramps, which is fair enough. However, when you do this it slows you down considerably, and you will get caught most of the time. This is because no matter how well you play you can never really shake off Dave, he will easily keep up with you; even if you use your boost to try and open up some space. You’ll manage to clear a small gap, only for Dave to lurk at the side of the screen meaning one mistake will be the end of you. Occasionally, whilst hanging onto the edge of a ledge you’ll get completely stuck too, with no chance of escaping the neon claws of Deletion Dave.
Despite the generous looking main menu, there are actually only three different ways to play the game solo. These are “Survival Mode”, “Tunnel Turmoil” and “Ramrafstar’s Revenge”. The first two modes are extremely similar, working essentially as endless chase modes where you collect MIPs (the in-game currency) on the go. The third will take a little while for you to unlock and doesn’t feel all that different either in all honesty. You can also play locally with up to three other players in Versus and Co-op modes. There are also online leaderboards if you are the type who likes going for glory and earning the bragging rights.
On the subject of unlockables you can purchase new characters, skills and power-ups from the shop which are obtained by playing the game (or spending MIPs to “hack” them, making them available for purchase sooner). This adds a bit of depth and strategy to the game, however it’s hit and miss.
For example, the first power-up you can purchase is that of the ‘jump overload’ which lets you jump higher and farther. The only problem is that this is a marginal increase on your normal jump, and you can’t use it in mid-air, only from the running position. It’s only later on where you can purchase the ‘jump override’ (essentially a double jump) and the ‘vector slide’ (mid-air boost) which actually add value such as preventing you plummeting to your death. I’d advise saving up MIPs and hacking into these to get them as soon as you can. Once you do the gameplay feels much more rounded, and a lot more forgiving.
Once unlocked, you can assign your power-ups to the B, X and Y buttons on your Xbox controller. Unfortunately, once you start your run there’s no on-screen reminder as to which power-up is assigned to what button, instead there are just three indistinguishable symbols at the top of the screen. It’s another minor niggle but can potentially cost you a substantial bit of progress.
The camera is also a bit slow at times. For example, when you fall from a significant height you can’t see below quickly enough to inform your next move. By the time the camera catches up you’ve fallen to your death or had a good spanking courtesy of Deletion Dave.
The difficulty is tough to gauge in Sure Footing as you can’t complete the game in the traditional way. So instead, you can choose what speed your character runs at to dial up, or back, the challenge. Each character has slightly different stats too which feed into this. However, after playing around with this, the difference is marginal at best.
Sure Footing looks pretty, with it’s psychedelic, arcade neon theme giving plenty for the eyes to feast on, as well as some surprisingly pretty backdrops to boot. Pixel Pete and his pals are all pretty cute too, and could have easily come straight from a Wreck-It Ralph movie. The only downside is that the menus are clunky, and not the easiest to navigate. The soundtrack does the job however, varying depending which sectors you are dashing through.
Sure Footing will only set you back £5.99, and will keep most players entertained for a few hours.
Sure Footing is a fun little game which hits the ground running. Despite lacking some variety most will find enough here to keep them going for a good while, especially given the reasonable price tag.
Take on the challenges of Sure Footing on Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One now!