“Typoman: Revised” by Brainseed Factory, Bilal Chbib, Lea Dickert, Zein Okko, Florian Wurth, SonicPicnic, Andy Robson, Arton Rexhëbogaj, Lino Morales, Gerd Mömken, Oleg Gorshkov, Simon Kickartz, Yorick Goldewijk, Tuur Hendrikx, Stefan Leertouwer, Wouter Messelink, Tom De Smit, Testology Ltd, Sam Read, Harrison Baker, Jamie Pendleton, Nathan Hedley, Luke Frampton, Andrew Cruttenden, Abi Hunt, Jamie Cook, Adam Smith, Charlotte Woolley & Nikki Piazza.
“[A] puzzle platformer. You slip into the role of a character made of letters, struggling to make your way through a dark and hostile world. Despite your small stature you have a powerful gift: You can craft words which will have an effect on the environment. But choose your words wisely – they can either be a blessing… [O]r a curse!”
I love games where the whole environment resembles the main mechanic itself, and “Typoman: Revised” is an excellent example for that kind. Many elements of the world in this puzzle platformer is made out of letters: The hero’s body, the enemies, but also gates, spikes, switches, levers, platforms and other things. While some of those items are primarily an aesthetic choice – just take the spikes, which are made out of As, not just fitting the shape of a spike, but also the sound you would make if you would crash into them -, others can be interacted with and thereby make an important change in the environment.
Single letters can be grabbed and thrown to another place, so that you afterwards are able to mash them together. Imagine a pile of letters, spelling “RUN”. You could take that as an instruction to run off, but the mechanical ladder, which would let you progress to the next part of the level, is latched and you can not reach it. Suddenly you see a T lying around. When you take this letter to the other ones, you can reassemble their order and make a “TURN” out of the four characters, which will extend the ladder.
But “Typoman: Revised” is not just a couple of neat logical puzzles, garnished with beautiful artwork; it is also a story-driven game, featuring the journey of the main protagonist in a war-ridden country. The player can get to know more about the background story by collecting hidden paper fragments, unraveling a story about hope and faith in those dark times. Now that is a combination you do not always see in an indie game: Heart-warming and brain-twisting at the same time.