Superhot - Analysis

Author: Juan García
Date: 2020-07-30 17:04:48
Superhot's starting idea is as simple as it is interesting: time progresses only when you move. This simple base is applied to a shooter to create an experience that reminds us in equal parts of the Matrix, Max Payne or John Wick. Spectacular and very entertaining. The funny thing is that the project was born in a gamejam, one of those that encourage the developer team to create something as fast as possible. The question we all asked ourselves was, is a game based solely on this mechanic possible? The answer is yes, and we are looking forward to writing this review to return to the virtual world that the game presents to us.

Superhot is a somewhat different title and much more demanding than it might seem. In practice, we will limit ourselves to picking up weapons (firearms and blunt weapons) and taking on all the enemies that come our way from a first-person perspective. Something almost routine in these times, but here it is renewed by making time almost stop when we are still. This breaks the frenetic and demanding rhythm of the shootings that occur to force us to think about the environment and consider the situation, since a single bullet will end our lives. Almost as if it were a puzzle, the situations of Superhot happen quickly and frantically, plunging us into a spiral of frantic shootings, swords and endless punches.

This is so because the action is not presented to us in a 'normal' way, but through a series of unique and independent situations, linked by a narrative in which we (the players) are an active part of the story. Yes, Superhot has a history, to the surprise of many. An elaborate conspiracy plot that knocks down the fourth wall at various times and that turns us into a mere dog of someone on the other side of the network of networks. For this, the developer has created a retro menu system that is so full of details and secrecy that it is difficult to list them all: mini-games, virtual reality demos, fat pixel videos ... Even to run the game we will have to click on an .exe file. A fun and peculiar way of presenting the 32 levels of the game, making it much more than a succession of extreme situations.

At this point it is worth noting the addictiveness of the Superhot experience, which sometimes restricts our actions to a predetermined path, to gradually open our hands until we allow ourselves to improvise as if we were an accomplished assassin. Almost in one sitting we will finish his campaign, which will not last more than a couple of hours after we get hooked. Not too much playing time in this modality, but just enough so that the mechanics don't get too old. During the 32 levels, only one playable twist (the body change) is included regarding the dodge-hit-shoot base, making those two hours just the right duration. Plus, afterward, countless extra game modes open up to make sure you keep us entertained for another good number of hours. On the one hand there will be the challenges, which put limitations and rules at normal levels, and ask us to meet a minimum time. Furthermore there are the unlimited levels, which also offer various versions to keep us entertained for several hours. It is better to consume these modes in small doses, since the repetitive action and the limitation in the number of actions can tire, however, well dosed, Superhot is a 'drug' that can last weeks in our body.

The truth is that it is a pity that it has not been used to introduce more playable turns such as the body change, since it manages to reinvent the base of Superhot, inviting us to replay levels again, if only to see what we are capable of do ... And by the way share it on the network of networks, through an own social network called Killstagram, in which, in the image and likeness of Instagram, we can follow and see what players around the world are doing.

The development team wanted action to be the main protagonist, knowing that we will need all five senses to survive, despite our unique ability. So it does not matter too much that the graphics are so simple (but functional), to the point that the scenarios lack textures, and the models show sharp edges. It is a brilliant artistic decision, which manages to attract attention to Superhot even before knowing how it works. In addition, in this way they ensure that almost any pc can move the game without any problem, further opening the market. The sound follows the same minimalist pattern, lacking almost completely a soundtrack, leaving the shots and blows to be the protagonists. This, not only does not take us out of the action, but it also achieves the same effect as its visual section: getting fully into the incredible action of Superhot. In the end, the pistol is an extension of our command or keyboard (with both forms of control, it works like a charm), completely eliminating all obstacles that may interfere with our total immersion in this virtual reality.

The truth is that it is a breakthrough, addictive and most entertaining experience, although it lasts too little and relies too much on a very limited number of mechanics. If this is not a problem, go ahead, Superhot is one of those games that people will imitate for years to come, for its daring gameplay and brilliant performance.