Story: The Inkorp corporation has started to experiment on its employees, holding some hostage and placing others in harm’s way. But while these poor folks are helpless to escape, there is hope and that’s you, a hoodie clad hero who is determined to free these prisoners and shut down Inkorp. Le Docteur runs the factory with an iron fist and between his nefarious plots and the countless inherent dangers of the factory itself, you won’t have a simple path to victorious glory. If you want to survive, let alone save your friends, you will need quick reflexes, impeccable timing, and you’ll need to use Inkorp’s own creations against them.
Entertainment Value: Splasher is a platformer that will test your skills, especially if you’re not a veteran of these tough indie platform games. As soon as I started up the first level, I was reminded of Super Meat Boy, a thought that returned often, so Splasher takes some cues from that indie classic. The crisp controls, nail biting timing, and of course, all too frequent deaths will bring back vivid memories for Super Meat Boy fans. But while it does make use of some of that game’s elements, Splasher also carves out a niche for itself and injects some fresh mechanics. The game is marketed as Super Meat Boy meets Splatoon and while a little broad, it does suit the game, I think. The levels start off simple enough, just avoid some pitfalls and make it to the other side, but soon various inks start to become a huge part of the experience. Inkorp makes some wild inks, ones that make you jump further and higher, ones that slow you down, and even ones that let you stick to walls, among other ink variants. If you want to succeed in Splasher, mastering these inks is required, as most levels will make you navigate a hair raising obstacle course of ink driven challenges. This also includes timed inks, as water sources often wash off the ink and if you don’t time your runs down to the second, you could find yourself in the right place, at the wrong time and facing certain death.
The deeper into the levels you progress, the more mechanics you’ll need to learn and by turn, the more complex the courses become. So don’t be afraid to replay certain levels until you have them down to a science, as learning timing can be crucial and of course, practice can make perfect. Splasher doesn’t boast a ton of levels however, with just over twenty courses available, so don’t expect hundreds of levels as seen in some similar games. But the levels offered are well crafted, intricate and can be a pleasure or a nightmare, depending on your skill level. I am sure some will find immense levels of frustration here, but you can’t blame the controls in this case. The controls are razor sharp and make even the tightest windows seem possible, so if you fail, you’ll know it wasn’t the controls. This is great news, as a hard game like this that demands precision should have excellent controls, which Splasher obliges. The visuals are bright and filled with color, an old school inspired look that is always fun to soak in when you have a moment to look around the levels. I had a lot of fun with Splasher, though to be honest, I did struggle at times with some courses. But I always felt like it was possible, if I put in the time to learn the courses and nail my timing. So if you’re a fan of tough but fair platformers that test your skills, give Splasher a look.