8 Overall Score

Fun graphics | Great chiptunes | Well designed challenges

No story | Extremely difficult | $8 is still more than $5

It’s 6 V’s. In case you were wondering.  That out of the way, I can introduce you to VVVVVV. Or V6. Or V’s.  I think I’ll just call it V’s, that’ll work.  Don’t ask me about the name, I just work here.  And on that note perhaps I should continue.  V’s is a flash game turned indie release on PC ($5 on Steam) turned 3DS eShop title.  If you don’t want to read what I think of the game, head here and play a short demo with your keyboard in your web browser. It’ll give you a taste of the game, but just a taste.

At the heart of it, V’s is a Commodore 64 game, and a brutally difficult one at that.  It was designed to be retro, and that includes the difficulty level of the game.  It’s classic platforming, with the twist being that you control gravity.  In fact every single button on the 3DS swaps gravity, aside from the keys you use to move around.  It’s simple, but it works.  Controlling gravity isn’t a new thing, and really this isn’t a new game, it was released a year ago.  But coming to the 3DS was a smart choice, the main reason being the d-pad.

I bought the game in an indie bundle pack on the PC and never really touched it, as I often do when I get 7 games at once, I tend to forget about one or more of them.  It turns out that was a stupid decision, because it really is a brilliant little game.  The colour scheme is basic, the control scheme is dead simple, the music is chiptune and the plot is irrelevant, but it’s a game that really hooks you in.  You keep going when you’ve died a dozen times in the same spot, because you can see yourself getting closer to the solution, and because death is just a minor inconvenience anyway, you don’t get nearly as frustrated.  When you die, you reappear at the latest checkpoint you walked over, of which there are a massive amount, sprinkled in just the right places.  They are integral to the levels, and integral to your enjoyment.

When I say levels, I really mean level. It’s one big map that you explore, finding trinkets, transporters and crewmates while dying constantly.  Different areas have unique twists to them, like repeating maze sections, or sections of map where you warp from one side to the other maintaining your momentum.  This works because you travel around in sections.  Instead of a scrolling world, each time you hit the edge of the screen (aside from the warping ones) the next screen is instantly loaded and you continue.  It sounds like it would make things even more difficult, and in some cases it does.  But, that’s just part of the game and how it was built.

But these things could all have been said about the PC version of the game if you played with a gamepad. (And if you have it on the PC, you really should) How does the 3DS change things?  Firstly it adds 3D.  You’d expect 3D in a graphically simple game like this to be very simple, and it is.  Think about 3D Classics: Kirby’s Adventure style 3D and you’ve got it.  Is it kind of neat? Sure, but it doesn’t really add anything important. The other thing it adds is price, as it’s $3 more than it is on the PC.  Normally I would get quite cross at this price, but as it was originally released at $15, and I think the game is improved for the control scheme and the neat 3D, I think $7.99 really is a good price.

So, if you’re looking for a very difficult, very well made platformer with some excellent chiptunes, here it is! If however you get frustrated easily, best skip this one.


Want to know what our review scores mean? Read about it here.


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Author: Micah View all posts by
Micah has been playing games since his first pong machine, and has been writing for as long as he could grip a pencil and not drool on the paper. So, for about a week.

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