Will You Snail?
Developer: Jonas Tyroller
Publisher: No Gravity Games
Genre(s): Platformer, Action, Arcade, Adventure
Platform: Nintendo Switch
Age Rating: PEGI 3
Release Date: 09/03/2022
A code was provided for review purposes
I have been a fan of Jonas Tyroller, the developer of Will You Snail? even before beginning my adventure in the game. Thus, when getting a review code for the title, I was incredibly thrilled. I like his humour, enjoy watching his YouTube videos, and was anticipating the release of this game for a while. Does the game live up to my high expectations? Find out in this Rapid Review.
Will You Snail? is a precision platformer that features Squid, an artificial intelligence that ceaselessly attempted to murder me. It works to be a frustration platformer, and it features many staples of the genre. The game insulted me, ridiculed me for dying, and threw countless seemingly random attacks my way. Yet, I never got overly frustrated. Though the artificial intelligence attempted to predict my movements and outsmart me, it was fun to be constantly in fear of death and attempt to manipulate the system to avoid traps. For me, Will You Snail? featured a perfect balance of frustration and reward.
Teaching Before Tests
The first reason the game has this perfect balance was that each mechanic was not only self-explanatory, but if the player did not understand a concept, Squid would call them out by explaining how easy it is to complete the task, shedding insight on the intended solution. Moreover, the developers introduce new ideas slowly. This made sure I knew exactly how to tackle a concept before mixing new elements in as well. Since the developers gave me the space to explore each mechanic individually, I knew how to improve, even if Squid was constantly trying to use the traps against me. Though innately some of the traps were designed to be frustrating, the way the game eased me into complex situations kept me from getting frustrated.
Another large part of why I was able to remain calm during my playthrough was how the difficulty options were implemented. Many rage games are obnoxiously difficult without accessibility. Will You Snail? takes a different approach. When I died too many times in a level, the artificial intelligence would lower the difficulty, claiming he was getting bored. The difficulty constantly fluctuated during my playthrough. If I died too many times, attacks would take longer to come out, enemies would be easier to kill, and the artificial intelligence made less frequent adjustments to his strategy. I thought this worked wonderfully. At the same time, completing levels in too few deaths would raise the difficulty, having inverse effects. This feature ensured Will You Snail? was tailored to my experience level throughout.
Since Will You Snail? features this dynamic difficulty setting, intense difficulty spikes rarely occur. Instead, this game includes a variety of different gameplay styles. Some levels focus on traditional platforming, others focus on puzzle solving, and some even involve basketball. This variety made the levels both approachable and engaging. I was surprised by how deep many of these game modes are. Even though some concepts only appear in a few levels, each was enjoyable.
Though these intermediate levels were enjoyable, my favourite levels were the platforming levels. In these, Squid constantly assaulted my character with an arsenal of traps and hazards. The minute-to-minute gameplay was incredibly rewarding. Though I enjoyed nearly every minute of my experience with the game, I was disappointed by how short the adventure was. There were one hundred levels, but each was brief. Moreover, some were simply there to flesh out the plot. Ultimately, I ended up getting through the game in a little under five hours. I had an excellent time playing through each element of the game and I was constantly challenged, but I still wanted to play the game more. At the same time, the only real reason I wanted to play the game more was that I was enjoying it a lot. Still, I wanted more levels for the price point.
To supplement the base game, there were plenty of secrets and extras to explore. The developer included optional lore blurbs, collectables, and hidden levels. I thought this was an excellent way to reward exploration and found myself looking for secrets in every level I played. Moreover, the game rewards completing each level on the most challenging difficulty and records the highest difficulty each level has been completed on. There are many reasons to revisit the levels.
The PAIn of a Robot
The lore segments were surprisingly enjoyable. I rarely look to play a platformer, let alone a precision platformer, for the story. However, I was impressed by how seamless and cohesive the story truly was. Instead of reading text entries chronologically, every entry I found was seemingly random. Sometimes they would discuss things I did not understand, yet other times they would be incredibly rudimentary. Piecing together these story elements made the lore more intriguing to me. I would constantly be thinking of these text entries that detailed the experience of one man and an artificial intelligence. My interest was compounded even further when I got to hear Squid’s side of the story. Throughout my game, I would see the way Squid reacted to certain events, and though living a life with the sole intent of causing pain is unmistakably brutal, I resonated with many of the feelings he felt.
Despite how much I enjoyed the lore of the game, I still would not suggest Will You Snail? to someone simply looking for lore. The reason the story elements worked was that they were not what I was looking for, and I simply had them ingrained into my head as I was playing. Still, there is a lot to find out about the world, and I was impressed by the depth of the content covered.
Shiny New Shell
To round out the package, Will You Snail? includes a lovely soundtrack. It was atmospheric and calming, yet it kept me energized. Levels had distinct themes but overall, the game sounded complete. It was subtle but nice.
The visuals on the other hand were a bit less impressive. Though they serve their purpose, I was not impressed with the visuals. Some of the obstacles are overly simplified, the wall textures are boring, and it was generally hard to see. Many of the levels were dark, so it was not always clear where to go. This was rarely too much of a problem, and never severely prevented progress, but it was frustrating at times, especially when traversing long areas. Moreover, the developer would also include massive flashes of light in the background which once again made it tricky to see. Personally, the visuals did not detract much from the experience, as I was not going into the game expecting gorgeous visuals, but it was still noteworthy.
Overall, I think Will You Snail? is an excellent time. It was short for the price point, but that was one of my few concerns. It performed well, kept me engaged, and never felt too overwhelming despite being a rage-inducing game. Will You Snail? is an easy game to recommend.
Rapid Reviews Rating
4.5 out of 5
You can purchase Will you Snail? on the Nintendo eShop here
You can find and read our reviews on OpenCritic.