Forma.8: a space probe NASA lost track of
03 Sep, 2016
Forma.8 is a small, unthreatening exploration probe that finds itself stranded on an unknown alien planet. The unimposing spacecraft has the sole responsibility of recovering a powerful energy source that lies deep underneath the surface of this hazardous planet. The mission is one that is full of unknown perils, but also one full of mysterious civilisations and disturbing secrets.
In this metroidvania-style experience the player starts with no hints, weapons or power-ups to assist him/her. Additionally, the game is open-world and the player must use his/her own intuition and skill to uncover secrets of the planet. You progress through solving puzzles, defeating enemies and utilising new abilities.
From released footage it appears that the enemies range from creepy mechanical-looking spiders, to birds and even dragons. The gameplay seems geared towards problem-solving rather than twitch gameplay, with the player’s movement emulating that of a floating object. Moreover, the dynamic physics in Forma.8 provide a strong foundation for good environmental puzzle solving.
The artistic backdrop uses 2D artwork alongside physics and dynamic effects that run smoothly at 60fps. The atmosphere is strange and supernatural with a meticulous attention to detail. This includes ambient particle effects, lava bursts and haze distortions emanating from volcanic areas. On a more simplistic note, there is also a lot of blue, purple and green coloured objects.
The sound design in Forma.8 is simple yet unnerving. There is no cut-scene dialogue and the game focuses purely on developing a creepy, futuristic atmosphere. It achieves this through playing an eerie techno soundtrack.
Forma.8 E3 Trailer
Forma.8 has been in development since 2011 and developers MixedBag claim that this is because of their commitment to smooth graphical fidelity. However, since the game is set to release on iOS and 3DS, it can be assumed that these graphics are scalable.