Free / Indie / Platformer

Game of the Year 2014: #9 – 2

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Hubol Gordon makes some weird games. If you browse this page, you’ll find some really interesting, but usually small, things that Hubol has made over the years. 2, however, is a huge game that took him two years to make. It’s wonderful, and largely expands upon what Hubol seems to enjoy from making games: how much creativity can exist in a medium without boundaries

It’s starts off as a simple but visually stunning 2D platformer, and doesn’t take long to show it’s true colors. Writing is etched all over the striking backgrounds, and enemies greet you with things wishes of death. Not long after you take down your first boss, Tiny Tim’s “Livin’ in the Sunlight” kicks in while you plummet into a rainbow cavern. This is Hubol’s 2, and it’s ready to surprise and amaze you, whether you want it or not.

The game takes you through a huge world, filled with puzzles and secrets that reminded me of Super Mario World and Yoshi’s Island in the best possible ways. Hidden paths in areas you’ve walked through a dozen times take you somewhere completely new, and warp areas let you play one-off mini games for rewards and upgrades. 2 is the perfect kind of platformer that I enjoy, with something new around literally every corner, and enough variety to keep you blazing through for hours at a time.

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If you’re one of the many, many people who have continued to pass up 2, this is the time to play it. It’s one of 2014’s best examples of a tiny developer outshowing nearly every AAA publisher blowing millions into a project no one is asking for. Instead of spending $60 playing the fourteenth Assassin’s Creed game, try kicking Hubol something (at the bottom of this page!) to play a game unlike anything that’s been released before.

2 is creative and excellent in all the right ways. It’s such a personal experience, you’ll feel like you know the artist behind it by the time you’re done. You’ll feel a range of emotions as Hubol expresses his own through puzzles, art, and level design.

You’ll be happy you played one of the best games of the year.

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