In SUPERHOT, time only moves when you do. The enemies don’t move, bullets don’t move, time is stopped when you stand still. You can fire the gun, but your bullet won’t travel until you move a long enough distance for time to pass. Enemies work the same way, their bullets stay frozen in midair until you take a step. This leads to you dodging bullets inches from your face with a quick step to the side.
I have to praise the game’s use of text, as it goes a long way in adding an extra bit of coolness to the whole package. Short messages appear occasionally, and one word at a time pops onto the screen. These bold, screen-filling words are accompanied by a punctuating sound effect that makes each of them feel powerful. Simple touches like that make SUPERHOT feel like it’s being made by someone who knows how this stuff works, and not just a newbie with a good idea lacking follow-through.
It’s easy to see the game’s game jam origins, though. It’s incredibly short, and the walls are as bare as the red silhouetted bad guys with sunglasses. The developer is currently attempting to expand the game and teases more to come after the final sequence. If a bit more depth were added to the experience, SUPERHOT could be something really special. As it stands, it’s a shortform ode to an unexplored way to play an FPS.
Check out SUPERHOT for free in your browser right here.