Human: Fall Flat Switch Review

Posted December 26, 2017 by Kyle Simcox in Video Games

Developers: No Brakes Games

Publisher: Curve Digital

Release Date: December 7th, 2017 (Switch)

Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch, Xbox One

Watch out below Nintendo Switch owners! Human: Fall Flat is a goofy and lovable physics puzzler with a charm that rivals the likes of Portal!

In Human: Fall Flat, you play as a blank human named Bob that dreams of falling and solving various puzzles in large, empty, lonely worlds. You’ll start off in a small isolated area and eventually begin to work your way through larger and more open environments. For example, one of the first worlds you go to will introduce you to climbing. It’s actually large enough to get a little disoriented in. I found myself wandering around a path that lead me to a cave full of these green cubes I never discovered the meaning of. The path itself also seemed to be a waste of time as it never got me closer to my actual goal.

The controls are very basic. The left joystick controls movement, the right manipulates the camera and the A button will allow you to reach new heights as is the responsibility of the jump button. Then, the Left and Right shoulder buttons will allow players to manipulate their Human’s arms, your essential puzzle solving tools. As charming as it is to shamble around the textureless world, the controls are probably the biggest issue with Human as with most physics based puzzlers. You’ll spend a lot of time battling against the physics and other mechanics. Rowing or navigating a boat feels damn near impossible. Its those sort of failures that make success all the more satisfying though.

Its just fun to smash glass.

Its also out of thanks to the physics that you’ll end up with many humorous moments. Bob literally falls into each new world and he slams pretty violently into the ground at a checkpoint if you have to respawn. The latter is actually quite frustrating on small bodies of land. I can’t tell you how many times Bob slammed into the ground, then rolled into the water which forced me to respawn again. The game will occasionally toss you a tip if you get stuck, but they’re usually vague and almost always unhelpful. Bob can lift most items but trying to get any work done with them usually only results in a few laughs, such as picking up items that are larger than Bob or longer. I remember trying to lift a speed boat and roll it into the water so I could advance. Bob would bend as his legs took him under the boat, with his torso supporting the boat at an impossible angle.

Then let’s not forget about the endless shenanigans we can get into with co-op.

One of the many things I love about Human: Fall Flat though is the ability to work around the games many puzzles. Most puzzles will have straight forward solutions that might require a jump and a climb to reach a lever or a switch, but as you progress, they become larger and require more thought and ingenuity. I remember one of the puzzles I managed to skip entirely by maneuvering myself onto a large blue pipe and just walking passed the puzzle I was stuck on and into the next room. However, not every puzzle is going to have a work around like that. Most of them will require you to solve them if you want to keep progressing.

Its a pain to load the catapult but insanely rewarding.

Despite being a blank, textureless human model/blob that exists in a textureless world, Human: Fall Flat is a rather gorgeous game in it’s own right. You can customize yourself with different outfits, and in a way, it kind of reminds me of an interactive water painting (Bob has cool dreams). The worlds lack texture but everything is colored and shaded and a lonely, melodic tune will pick up throughout the level as well to accompany you on your lonely journey through Bob’s dreams which only adds on to the whole dreamlike experience. There’s a castle level around the beginning that was easily my favorite in it’s design and exploring the large empty world was entertaining.

I think my biggest disappointment with Human: Fall Flat is that it doesn’t seem to have much to do with the Switch’s features. Other than that, it’s a beautiful game with fun, well thought-out puzzles that’s worth playing. Plus you can play Human: Fall Flat while you’re on the toilet thanks to the Switch. Just don’t let the wonky physics get you down.

About the Author

Kyle Simcox