It’s not often enough that shapes get the appreciation they deserve. But here we go, a super duper action adventure where shapes are engaged in an eternal war with the squares fighting the oppressive circles. Okay, so the story is a little exaggerated but things explode! That’s what matters right?

Flat Heroes is a simple and enthralling platformer where players engage various arenas and by simply jumping, avoid an array of deadly traps and killer shapes. Following in the same vein as platformers such as N+ and N++, Flat Heroes allows for energetic platforming, followed by a tremendous amount of death and carnage.

Through a series of worlds, players must complete a vast number of arenas littered with all manner of traps and obstacles. Usually these stages amount to a single area (be it a square, rectangle and so forth) and tasks follow through the same end game, survive. There are different layouts for players to traverse and a number of methods to which you can die. With wall turrets, homing missiles, walls you can’t touch and the worst of all, deadly lines that zap across the screen like ninjas!

Flat Heroes has a ton of arenas to concur, a huge variation of enemies to avoid and a half decent amount of game modes to play. The gameplay is massively energetic and has a great sense of pacing.

My major gripe with Flat Heroes is the jumping mechanic. Plain and simple it’s extremely infuriating to use during the more hectic events. Now games like N++ give an understanding of how mechanics work with a quick overview and guides at the ready to look over if you’re having problems. Flat Heroes has no guides or tutorials, which is great for adaptive learning and fluent gameplay. But! Big but, it’s difficult to understand how the jump mechanic works in full. It sounds weird but there are different degrees of jumping from a power jump, jumping off walls and so on. But it’s difficult to understand whether certain factors come into jumping. Do I need to stand still to use the power jump? Can I only jump from certain surfaces? Why is it that I jump a few times and don’t jump at all afterwards? There’s no meter to tell me I’ve run out of juice and even to simply jump from the ground proves utterly annoying!

This can be forgiven if the jump itself received some tweaking, to make sure it’s more responsive.

It’s cumbersome to jump and the manic platforming segments. Now thankfully most levels are enjoyable and easy to navigate with some trial and error being present only a few levels. It’s great as well that to complete a world you don’t need to finish every single level in a that world.

But believe me there are some pretty annoying levels here and there. The difficulty spikes are ridiculous and with a limited jump mechanic, it only becomes even more infuriating.

Flat Heroes is simple, extremely fun and a manically joyful platformer with some great energy and fun multiplayer modes. Yet the jumping mechanic is a pain to use, the difficulty spikes are awful (only so due to the lame jump mechanic) and the lack of guidance is annoying (there are no guides or controller layouts in the options for goodness sake!).

Worth checking and hopefully the developers will tweak the jumping mechanic.

++ Energetic and manic fun
+ Good multiplayer modes
- Jump mechanic needs tweaking

A PC review code for Flat Heroes was provided by the publishers for the purpose of this review