Much anticipated indie platformer Fez releases in just two days for XBLA.
Fez is releasing this week on Xbox Live Arcade. If you don’t know what it is, read on
After trailers, demos at trade shows and no firm release data for seemingly forever, Fez is finally releasing. A generally 2D platformer, Fez is fairly unique in what is does. Here’s a summary in case you don’t know.
Fez is a 2D platformer, but is twisted by the fact that the world can be rotated – effectively taking the game to 3D for brief moments. This is done so players can jump on platforms, as players rotate the perspective 90 degrees each time.
The game has been dubbed a “mystroidvania” title, due to the lack of combat and the game being built around puzzle across more than 150 levels.
The lack of enemies is also intentional, so as to create a non-threatening world where there are plenty of ‘mysteries’ to be found. The game also has a higher level of difficulty that runs concurrently with the main game, with a second set of collectables that are quite hard to find.
The game has been in development for five year. One of the original developers dropped out, the game lost funding twice, was featured heavily in Indie Game: The Movie – along with its creator Phil Fish – and gained a publisher through Trapdoor in 2011.
The game has also received awards throughout its development cycle. In 2008, an early version of the game won Excellence in Visual Art at the Independent Games Festival. In 2011, a more final build won the Technical Excellence award along with the Seumas McNally Grand Prize.
Fez is only available for XBLA right now, likely due to the exclusivity deal Microsoft holds over the game. When that ends, though, it wouldn’t be surprising if the game came to Steam.
Personally speaking, Fez is a game I’m neither excited nor not excited for. I feel like it’s a game that’s hard to convey through pictures and words, and players need to play it. It’s similar to Super Meat Boy, which doesn’t sound fun when described as an incredibly hard game but is when played. I think Fez looks unique enough to differentiate itself, though.