Fractured Soul

9 Overall Score

Very interesting mechanic for character control, good pacing and variation from level to level

Bullet Hell Shoot Em Up levels, seem out of place, not sure why they were included

Going into this review I had not heard anything about Fractured Soul… and for heading into the game with no expectations, I have to say I was quite pleasantly surprised by it, and will probably be playing Fractured Soul long after this review is over.

At its heart, Fractured Soul is a simplistic 2D platformer, with only three button commands (jump, shoot, phase up / down). It’s easy to be fooled, but the game smoothly builds on this simple control scheme with varied environments and the right pacing for introducing new elements that keep things interesting as you progress through the game’s 30 levels.

It’s more about the game play than the story (there aren’t a lot of story elements in the title), but from what I gather you are playing an entity who’s trapped on a space ship of some sort. Your character is trying to escape the station, and makes his way through the ship level by level.

The trick here is that a version of the current level exists on both screens of your 3DS, often times identical, but most times slightly different, making progression seem difficult or impossible.

As you control the entity, pressing the right or left bumper will transport him to the screen he is currently not on, leaving a ghost image that travels (but is immune to all damage and hazards as you travel through the other screen).

This quickly gets complex and difficult to manage, as often times the platforms you need to traverse  will be half on one screen and half on the other, so you not only need to jump with precise timing, but you also need to phase between each screen at the right times to avoid an untimely demise.

The mix of challenging platforming puzzles and checkpoints (so you don’t have to go back to the beginning of the level when you die) are just right for my skill level, but power gamers will definitely want to try and meet the unforgiving par times for each level to add extra challenge.

The only inexplicable moment in the game came for me when things switched to a bullet-hell “shoot ’em up” for two levels in the middle of the game. It wasn’t the end of the world, as they were done adequately, I’m just not really sure why we switched to a completely different game mode in the middle of the game (I haven’t beat the game yet, so this might be happening again).

I’m trying not to provide too much detail about specifics of the game play, as part the game’s charm is discovering which new twist the game is going to throw at you in the next level to change the dynamics.

I thoroughly enjoyed this title, and for $11.99 you really can’t go wrong. I know I’ve spent $60 on games that I haven’t enjoyed nearly as much as Fractured Soul, so if challenging 2D platform romps are your thing, hit up the eShop on September 13th and grab yourself a copy.


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Author: Dave View all posts by
Dave will tell you that he likes to play video games, this is in fact a lie. What he really likes to do is buy games, and leaving them sitting unopened on his shelf. He is a monster.

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