Backworlds from Skymap Games and Logic Ember is a colorful and fun puzzle platformer on Nintendo Switch. Learn more about it in our Backworlds review!
In Backworlds from Skymap Games and Logic Ember you’ll be taking on a colorful and fun puzzle platformer on Nintendo Switch. The project had a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo way back in 2012, securing the support of 30 backers – who are listed at the Backworlds website for their support – and this the journey began. After getting a release on Steam last year, it has now made its way to the Nintendo Switch. But… what is Backworlds? This is a multi-dimensional puzzle platforming adventure in which you’ll be moving through two worlds as you find creative ways of carrying on with your adventure.
You’ll move your character with the D-Pad as it walks left and right. You can jump with the B button. The right analog stick will be used to move a cursor around the screen so that you can mark small sections with the ZR button to switch them into the other dimension. You can also change things back by using the R button. The size of the cursor can be altered by pressing up or down on the D-Pad so that you can paint as little or as much of a space as you want. You’ll basically be painting with an interdimensional brush to overcome the obstacles on your path as you try to get from point A to point B. By doing this, you’ll erase some elements while adding others to each area so that you can go through short tunnels or climb higher than before.
You can also put your head and body to good use by pressing the Y button so that you can push or pull some objects. Sometimes you’ll have to collect energy blobs before you can open a door to carry on, so pay attention to each area in case you need to switch between one dimension and the other to make some moving platforms and walls and blocks disappear/appear as needed. You can also press the + button to check your progress, review the game’s options, or check out the map. You can also check a mini-map by pressing the X button. Oh, and you can also play this one with the console’s touchscreen when in Portable or Tabletop Mode or when playing on a Nintendo Switch Lite.
You’ll sometimes have to interact with switches that will open and close doors or get a hold of a magnet that can attract specifically marked blocks so that you can gain access to more and more colorful blobs. Some of these sections will usually have a reset switch you can interact with just in case you mess up and need to move blocks back to their original spot. The difficulty will ramp up at a slow but steady pace, later asking you to combine everything you’ve learned up until that point to, for instance, trap a creature in the other dimension so that it can’t move around a block while you try to get a door open, only to bring it back so that it can move the block, closing the first door while opening up a second one.
The other creatures you’ll meet won’t be able to hurt you. The worst they can do is shove you around, and even then, you can end up using this to help you solve many of the puzzles you’ll run into. This same philosophy carries over to boss encounters. They’re not boss battles since you’ll be using the abilities of the creatures that act as the boss for an area to be able to beat them in a puzzle configuration that is different and unique for each boss.
There will be more than one area to visit, with all of them interconnected on the same map. Each new area will also introduce new elements for you to consider, as well as require you to collect a different colored blob to be able to unlock the doors that will lead you to the next boss encounter. For instance, the second area I accessed made it possible to paint most of the screen to change into the other dimension… which was water-based! This meant that by panting the entire screen, I could now swim around instead of having to jump – that is unless I ran into spots with very strong water currents.
Backworlds was a pleasant surprise on Nintendo Switch. I liked what I saw in the game’s trailer and screen, but I did not expect the gameplay loop to be so relaxing yet addictive. There’s always “just one more colorful blob” to collect in each major room you visit, and thanks to the convenient teleporters, you can quick travel around the overall map with great ease. Backworlds is a very fun puzzle platformer, and it’s one you should definitely check out on Nintendo Switch.
This Backworlds review is based on a Nintendo Switch copy provided by Skymap Games.