Typoman

4.5 Overall Score
Gameplay: 4/10
Graphics: 5/10
Sound: 5/10

Atmosphere | Sense of peril

Technical issues abound | Puzzles a mixed bag | Unresponsive controls

To keep things brief, Typoman is a puzzle platformer that takes place in a moody, dangerous world. A deliberately vague storyline adds to the game’s lonely atmosphere. The protagonist is never identified as Typoman. Rather, his body is formed from letters that spell H-E-R-O, so he is simply known as the HERO. He’s rather defenseless during many crucial moments of the game; fortunately, he has a benefactor, mysterious though she is:

typoman_screenshot_1

After simply coming into existence, our HERO will traverse a frightening world, solving word-based puzzles and running from hazards and formidable enemies.

Maneuvering around letters and manipulating them to your advantage is the key to solving puzzles. The HERO can push or pull letters, pick them up over his head, drop them, throw them, or activate the scrambler on a cluster of them, which brings them up on the GamePad’s touch screen for easy rearranging.

Despite having all of these options, it can be (and usually is) a huge pain to work with words and letters in this game. Many times, multiple words on the screen will contain the letters needed to create a new word that will change or activate something in the game world. Most of your time will be spent stumbling over words and fumbling with letters; the process is so tedious and clumsy, the joy that might come from thinking through a problem is diminished or forgotten completely.

typoman_screenshot_2

Sadly, the puzzles themselves are a mixed bag anyway. More often than not, the words that need to be formed don’t seem to fit the situation very well. Other puzzles don’t fit well into the game’s flow, and there are many one-off mechanics that have no precedent.

I wish I could say platforming in Typoman is a different story, but it’s not. Chase or escape sequences are a nice change of pace from the slower puzzle-solving elements in the game, but the platforming is barebones, uninspired, and riddled with uncertainty (a pet peeve of mine). Worse still are the sudden skips in framerate, which sabotaged more than one jump for me.

Speaking of technical issues, Typoman has an abundance of those, starting with atrocious loading times. Additionally, the game can freeze completely; this happened to me twice in the approximately 4 hours it took me to complete the game.

typoman_screenshot_3

Yes, Typoman is also very short for a $14 game. It’s split into just three chapters and a prologue, I believe, which may come as a shock when you realize that it takes less than an hour to complete the prologue and chapter 1.

The Recommendation

I had such a dismal time playing Typoman, however, the end couldn’t come soon enough. Unignorable technical problems and poorly conceived puzzles held back what might have been a great video game concept.

Summary

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Author: Holly Fellmeth View all posts by
Site Manager/Editor - Holly's favorite hobby is playing new or different games. She believes there is no other medium that can offer such weird and wacky things as the gaming industry can. Her Nintendo Network ID is Aeroweth.