Electron Dance

Electron Dance Highlights


Side by Side: Magicka 2

Side by Side is a video series on local multiplayer games. This is the second series, episode 6 of 10.

Joel Goodwin of Electron Dance and Gregg Burnell of Tap-Repeatedly aim at the monsters yet totally kill each other dead in Magicka 2!

  • We agreed it was funny
  • We agreed it was fun
  • We agreed it took a while to show it's true colours
  • We agreed to agree

If you enjoy the series, please like our videos and subscribe to our channel.

Watch the video here or direct on YouTube.


Art of the Impossible


I played an amazing looking game this week, Fragments of Euclid by Antoine Zanuttini, a short first-person puzzler that appears to be set inside the art of M. C. Escher.

For me, however, it's more like a dry run for William Chyr's Manifold Garden, a game I've been looking forward to for a while now. Manifold Garden is also a first-person puzzle game with Escher-inspired impossible geometry. It should be no surprise to hear I discovered Euclid through Chyr's Twitter feed.

Can Euclid tell me something about Manifold Garden?

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Wot I Think: Recursed

I thought it was about time I wrote something again for Rock Paper Shotgun. Right now you can read my Wot I Think about Portponky's difficult yet brilliant puzzle-platformer, Recursed. I've been playing this on and off for a few months.

If you found Inception’s dream within a dream within a dream too difficult to follow, you’ll be hopeless at brain-shredding puzzle game Recursed by Portponky. In Recursed, you can easily find yourself inside a room inside a room inside a room… while, uh, carrying the room you’re in.

Go read it!


Thumper Ain’t No Flow Game

I recently admitted I didn't think I was going to play this one and I've not gone back on that. That's why Shaun Green, who has done work for RPS and ran Arcadian Rhythms for five years, has stepped in to write about that noisy new kid on the rhythm game block: Thumper. At least I think he has, because the opening line of his essay is---


How do we write about Thumper (Drool, 2016)?

Many writers have opted for hyperbole and impressionistic description, deploying jagged sentences like brush strokes and needle jabs as they attempt to portray their experience: velocity, violence, vigour. This does convey something of how the game feels, but it's not what I want to write.

Yet despite my many and various opinions about Thumper I couldn't decide what they should cohere around. The writhing, chrome-plated visuals? Its deliciously understated industrial soundtrack? What it makes of its relatively low-key gameplay verbs?

I didn't have a satisfying answer until I looked at my Twitter timeline and saw a discussion about death, about failure. The elephantine space-beetle in the room when it comes to Thumper is how hard it is. So yes, we need to talk about difficulty.

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On Monday, I tweeted that while Thumper (Drool, 2016) looked and sounded great, I had already decided I wasn’t putting myself through that. I didn’t want the stress.

The next day I put myself through THOTH (Carlsen Games, 2016), a twin-stick arena shooter with an important twist. Normally, shooting is the act of cleaning. Not here. In THOTH, shooting is the act of making your life fucking worse.

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Side by Side: Affordable Space Adventures

Side by Side is a video series on local multiplayer games. This is the second series, episode 5 of 10.

Joel Goodwin of Electron Dance and Gregg Burnell of Tap-Repeatedly take off together for some Affordable Space Adventures on an alien world!

  • This is a co-op title for the Nintendo Wii U
  • The car horn is adorable
  • "Whoa whoa whoa whoaaaaa we got a little bit close there"
  • Nicklas "Nifflas" Nygren of Knytt Stories worked on this title with KnapNok Games

If you enjoy the series, please like our videos and subscribe to our channel.

Watch the video here or direct on YouTube.


The Insufficient You


I completed the first-person thriller Asemblance (Nilo Studios, 2016) in a few hours but what had started out as excitement morphed into frustration and eventually liquefied into a bitter soup of dissatisfaction.

Like Cradle (Flying Cafe for Semianimals, 2015) which I discussed recently, it marries interesting ideas to some big flaws. But it has a lethal problem which cannot be fixed: something that’s vital to enjoy the game is not included in the purchase price.

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The Anatomy of ANATOMY


At one point in ANATOMY (Kitty Horrorshow, 2016), a door opened by itself.

It happened at 10 o’clock at night and I needed to put head to pillow soon. I wasn’t alone and the house was not particularly quiet. The whoosh of a toilet tank refilling. The clomp-clomp of neighbours jogging up and down the stairs in what sounded like metal boots. The reassuring whirr of a computer fan.

Yet I was absolutely terrified.

I thought: absolutely FUCK this game. I had no urgent need to find out what existed on the other side of that door, to let ANATOMY drag its ragged, rusty claws through my subconscious.

I shut the computer down.

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One Step Forward, One Step Back


Electron Dance reader Ketchua brought Cradle (Flying Cafe for Semianimals, 2015) to my attention many years ago and something about its look stood out. Its release last year seem to go largely unnoticed although Adam Smith gave it a glowing review on Rock Paper Shotgun.

Cradle is gripping, featuring a complex sci-fi story that is serious and unexpectedly bleak: but holy Jesus it has some problems.

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The Unbearable Now: On The Witness

On the theme park island of The Witness, you solve puzzles. Solving puzzles leads to more puzzles. Keep working. Keep digging. Keep solving. Again and again and again. But this process cannot continue forever. Where does The Witness end? And why?

At last, it is here: The Unbearable Now is a spoiler-filled interpretation of The Witness (Thelka, 2016) that’s been months in the making. It is laced with a few choice expletives, but definitely no gore. Or nudity.

Watch the film below or direct on YouTube.