Cubed3 Nintendo gaming, Wii and DS

And Yet It Moves (WiiWare) Review

Review for And Yet It Moves on WiiWare - on Nintendo Wii U, 3DS games review

In recent years it has become far easier for independent game developers to break into the market with their creations. Be it via Steam on PCs, Microsoft’s Xbox Live Arcade/Indie Games, Sony’s PlayStation Network, Nintendo’s WiiWare and DSiWare (and, soon, 3DSWare), or Apple’s App Store, there are plenty of platform choices for budding creators out there. Austria-based Broken Rules is one such developer, and now their highly unique platformer And Yet It Moves has made its way to WiiWare after previously debuting on Windows, Mac OS X and Linux. Does And Yet It Moves tick enough of the right boxes to prevent it from sliding into oblivion?

And Yet It Moves throws aside any real plotline, much like many of its genre brethren, and instead focuses on providing gamers with a visual style scarcely seen before and top-notch platforming mechanics. The name itself is quite an oddity, though it does make sense when discovering how the game works. Not only do you run and jump around And Yet It Move’s levels, but you must also take control of the world itself, tilting and spinning it to find your way to the goal. Flipping and rotating the screen helps your little pencil-sketch dude traverse the game world; through the mechanic you alter gravity to compensate for his limited jumping ability, enabling him to escape to areas otherwise unavailable. With a twist you can create new paths by changing the ceilings and walls into your floor, or creep/fall through thin gaps with less risk. The creatures and environmental obstacles you meet in this world, such as bats that always move to the roof, or rocks tossed by monkeys, are also affected by this movement, which you can use to your advantage - or cause yourself a disadvantage by inadvertently sending loose boulders hurtling towards you, if you’re not careful.

Moving the world is intuitive, both when using a Classic Controller or the standard motion controller, and actually improves over the original PC game, which only let you tilt at 90 degree intervals; the WiiWare version allows you to flip through a full 360 degree at once, if you so wish. Using the Wii Remote alone, you hold the 1 button to freeze the game, tilt the controller until you reach the angle you desire, then release 1 to return to normal. There are plenty of control methods though, if that doesn’t rock your world: one Remote and Nunchuk configuration has you holding the A button and making key-like rotations to twist the screen, another uses the pointer to determine the spin, each also only moving the world when you have A held down. You can also eschew motion control altogether by using the Remote’s D-pad or the Classic Controller’s shoulder buttons to get your world-swirling fix.

Although the gameplay can be summed up quite easily, Broken Rules have injected a considerable amount of level variation into And Yet It Moves; despite the low number of levels, not a single one feels like a retread of another. These levels are fairly long, but with very frequent checkpoints that signal which way to go if you lose your bearings. Getting lost is almost an impossibility, and the game is very rarely frustrating because of it, despite how easy it is to decimate your character.

And Yet It Moves’ gameplay might be its strongest facet, but it is no slump in the presentation department either. The world in And Yet It Moves is presented with a ripped paper effect, and the features of the world play around with this style, be it with an instant-death black area being where the paper ends, or cut-out enemy creatures. Your main character himself is just a black and white pencil drawing. The style as a whole is visually striking and helps the game to stand out, with a decent amount of environmental differentiation through its three worlds, including forest and cave landscapes.

Like the concept and mechanics, And Yet It Move’s musical features are highly simplistic also. In truth, there isn’t really any music to be heard, just background wildlife noises, and a pleasant humming theme accompanying the menus. A lack of music may sound like laziness, but in this case it helps to calm and ease players, and even helps the world feel more alive; you can hear even the tiniest pin drop in it.

And Yet It Moves is purely a single player endeavour, but offers so much to that player it might as well be two games in one. Aside from the main Journey mode, that will take up a considerable amount of hours with head-scratching puzzles to be tackled with an infinite number of respawns, there are other modes using the same levels that pretty much speak for themselves, such as Speedrun and Time Trials. Also included are the Limited Rotations and Survival modes, which restrict the amount of tilting you can use and your life count respectively. A few of these, and some game-altering ‘Modification’ features that can speed up the game or change the camera, are unlockable via an achievement system, which rewards the player for both basic and more abstract accomplishments through the game. From an initially minimalistic approach and beginning, And Yet It Moves opens up a whole world of content, and makes the end product a incredibly strong contender for your 1000 Wii Points.

Gameplay

Very simple, but entirely flawless, regardless of your chosen control option. An excellent balance of obstacle and enemy positioning, checkpoints and level length, with frustration kept at arm’s length.

Graphics

A highly stylised paper look that blends seamlessly into gameplay, and a decent level design distinction, even if there are a low number of proper levels.

Sound

In short: no music. In long-form: the environment's chirping and wildlife, coupled with the menu's humming, set the mood far better than music ever could for this kind of game.

Value

Strictly a single user endeavour, but the extras that open up during play, couples with the length of the levels themselves, ensures a meaty game should you choose to explore more of it outside the main mode.

Cubed3 Rating

9/10
Rated 9 out of 10

Exceptional - Gold Award

About this score
Rated 9 out of 10

An impressive debut from Broken Rules, who have taken their own name literally by screwing up the rule book and trying something a little different within an established genre. The gamble pays off: with a friendly concept, striking art, and abstract-yet-believable world, And Yet It Moves presents is a worthy addition to the WiiWare catalogue.

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14.09.2010

5

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Developer

Broken Rules

Publisher

Broken Rules

Genre

Puzzle

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  9/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  10/10 (1 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

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It's on my to buy list for the end of the year. The concept sounds intriguing and have read several reviews that praise the game.

Senior ModeratorStaff Member

An absolutely stunning game that definitely deserves all the success it's currently getting!

Let's hope for a 3DS version!

Adam Riley < Operations Director :: Senior Editor :: Cubed3 Limited >
Word of Adam | Voice123 Profile | AdamC3 on Twitter

Have the Linux version myself, and indeed it it awesome. Half way through you get bitten by a snake and it all goes a bit psychedelic, making for some great levels.

jesusraz said:
Let's hope for a 3DS version!

Hmm...I disagree. I don't think it's a very good match for that system; you couldn't really do the mechanic justice, as turning the entire system round while retaining control just wouldn't be comfortable. On top of that, I'm not sure what the other features of the system would add. If they were to develop on 3DS, I'd prefer Broken Rules to come up with something else unique that could take advantage of the system.

And Yet It Moves is a fantastic game, and it deserves all the positivity it gets. Smilie

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