Recently it seems that puzzle games have been coming thick and fast. With so many puzzlers out in the wild, developers are having to find new and inventive ways to gain and maintain our attention. World Splitter is the latest game now throwing its hat into the ring, but does it do enough to stand out among the ever-increasing crowd?
The idea behind World Splitter is a clever one. In order to complete each level, you simply need to make your way from the left side of the screen to the right. Of course, there are obstacles that you must overcome – because come on, it was never going to be that easy. There may be a platform that is just out of reach or a wall that blocks your path. In order to overcome these barriers, you need to switch from one world to another, and this can be done instantly as you play.
Within each level, there is a solid white line that can be moved and rotated across the screen. This line, or dimension rift, splits the world in two, and by controlling that line you can hide and reveal sections of each world as you choose – that platform that was out of reach? Maybe in the other world there is a platform you can jump to, which would make the other platform easier to reach, or that wall blocking your path simply isn’t there when you flick between them. Imagine the rift as being like a curtain, revealing or hiding relevant sections of the game world as you choose.
This mechanic is used in some fairly ingenious ways, and although my clunky description here might not do it justice, once you start using it you quickly pick up how it can be used to aid you in-game, and the variety of ways in which it is used quickly picks up.
By combining this puzzle mechanic with platforming, World Splitter develops what is an original idea into some clever self-contained levels. Within each world there are a set number of aliens to collect which adds a further level of challenge. I found that this kicked off the OCD gamer in me, and I simply wouldn’t accept a level as complete until I had collected them all, which is a lot trickier than it sounds.
The level difficulty quickly ramps up in World Splitter, and often there were plenty of times I would need to stop and have a think about what I needed to do, planning out my route through each level before putting it in action. On top of that, there were even a few instances when I could not work out how to get past a level, which resulted in me having to play something else or put the controller down completely and call it a day, before returning and having another crack at it later.
Luckily World Splitter is built in such a way that this dip in, dip out style of play works quite well. Each level is self-contained, and World Splitter can be picked up quite quickly. Playing for 5 minutes or 5 hours doesn’t really matter depending on how much World Splitter does it for you, and this pick up and play aspect serves World Splitter well – although I didn’t sit down and play World Splitter for long periods of time, I enjoyed having something I could jump in for a quick 5 minutes while still feeling like I was making progress.
Saying that, there is one level that really had me stumped to the point that my playthrough has come to a firm stop. I am well over halfway in my progress, but with the level I am currently stuck on, I can’t see the solution – yet. The aliens need to be rescued and I need to get to the other side of the screen, but I can’t for the life of me figure it out.
To World Splitters’ credit, I still have it installed on my console, and I do dip into it on occasion with the hope that I am struck with some sudden inspiration that allows me to complete this level and move on, but this says as much to the fact that I know I am close to the end and can’t leave a game unfinished as it does about my enjoyment of the game.
That being said, I have found that I am dipping in to complete the level I am stuck on, while not revisiting any of the levels I have already completed. World Splitter does allow this with a level select screen should you wish to go back and have another crack at any. Each level shows your stats, such as time and aliens collected, so the option to replay and beat your previous best is there should you want it, although this is something that has never really appealed to me.
World Splitter has a story, but it does feel that it is there as merely a bit of background dressing as opposed to front and centre. This isn’t anything shocking for puzzle games of this type, but if you’re looking for a narrative-driven puzzler, World Splitter is not it, but it is a decent puzzle-platformer in any case and well worth a look if you’re after something a bit different.
World Splitter PS5, PS4 Review
Overall - Very Good - 7/10
Mixing platforming and puzzle solving with a clever multi-dimension mechanic that allows you to instantly jump from one world to another, World Splitter is a decent puzzle game that I enjoyed spending time with.
- Clever dimension splitting mechanic adds a new spin on platforming
- Solid controls – controlling both the rift and your alien character are simple and work well
- Easy to dip in and out of – allows for a quick 5 minutes of play
- New elements such as switches and portals keep later levels feeling fresh
- Platforming can feel clunky
- Early levels feel repetitive
Review Disclaimer: This review was carried out using a copy of the game provided by the publisher. For more information, please read our Review Policy.
Primary version tested: PS4. Reviewed using: PS5.