Snapshot is the debut title from Indie developers Retro Affect. It’s a 2D Puzzle Platformer that features the classic 16-bit inspired art style and a fantastic soundtrack blended with imaginative mechanics that’s sure to give the players their money’s worth. At its heart, Snapshot is a unique platformer that can go head to head with the genre’s best.
You play as a stranded robot that goes by the name Pic, who can capture objects with his camera and manipulate those objects to traverse from one location to another. Your objective is to collect coins and progress through the level to the “Sphere” and when you reach that point, the level ends. Throughout the level, you can capture objects such as crates, plants and animals by taking a picture of them and once you’ve captured the object, you can place them in the environment to any spot that will help you progress through that particular level. During the initial levels however, you really do not face difficult situations as the puzzles remain pretty basic like placing a crate so you can jump over a ledge or using objects to act as a base while you jump through a field of spikes. It sounds simple but as you progress through the game, the difficulty keeps on increasing and you are introduced to new settings and environments that force you to approach problems in a unique way. This ensures you keep trying out new ways to finish the level.
The developers have really done a good job while introducing new objects and properties. In a short span of time, you go from jumping on crates to reach ledges to using the in-game physics as your ally to solve the levels. It’s really interesting to see how you can use these photos in the game as the photography element really doesn’t overshadow the game’s platforming.
In fact, I’d say the entire design is very well integrated and you can’t really take advantage of the system. The level design is fantastic and each level brings something new to the table. The levels are quiet short and each stage is divided into minimum three levels where you keep on learning about new properties and face new puzzles. The design isn’t repetitive but it can get a bit sadistic at times. One wrong move and you have to start the level all over again, even if you were away ahead in the puzzle. It does get frustrating at times because the controls are a bit sluggish and the fact that you have to start all over again just because you didn’t time your jump correctly and were hit by spikes by an inch can really take a toll on your nerves.
The game doesn’t really take it easy on you even when you finish a level. Despite your best efforts, you will still mostly be beaten by the par time on your first try. However, after multiple tries where you understand how to manoeuvre yourself through the map, you may end up clearing the par time. Frankly speaking, this gets a bit ridiculous at times because the amount of dexterity and coordination that you require to finish those levels is way too high. I’m used to this treatment having played Kyle Pulver’s previous title, Offspring Fling but it can get a bit daunting for newcomers.
Besides the occasional difficulty spike, there isn’t a lot I didn’t like about this game. The mechanics are perfectly in sync with the level design never letting the player feel handicapped during the game. The controls aren’t as fluid as other platformers but you won’t have a lot of issue with them. The animations are gorgeous and your character is an absolute delight to look at.
Snapshot features a 16-bit inspired art style that really sets the tone of the game. In a genre that is older than 25 years, Snapshot really prides itself on its innovative mechanics, amazing aesthetics and a fantastic soundtrack. It offers players a ton of interesting levels, complemented by an excellent progression system throughout the game that keeps you asking for more.