Standpoint: That chandelier goes great With your boots - Games Weekly

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Sunday, March 1, 2015

Standpoint: That chandelier goes great With your boots

How often has humanity looked at the roof with contempt, knowing they will never walk on it? Developer Unruly Attractions won’t stand for this, though, and has  designed a clever puzzle game, Standpoint, to deal with it. In it, the walls or the  ceiling can easily become the floor with a push of a button, flipping  the main  character around as you try to find the right path forward through a mysterious place.

Teaching yourself the right thinking is the first challenge of Standpoint. The game will let you flip gravity, morphing the wall or ceiling into a floor as long as you can get close enough to it. If there’s a hazard that’s everywhere but the ceiling, just shift gravity so you land on the roof and you should be fine. In some cases though, every bit of wall is dangerous. So what‘s a player to do? Should you flip gravity up and down quickly to get through? Should you go to a curve in the hallway and turn the dangerous corridor into a pit to just jump across? Going in, it didn’t seem like flipping gravity would be enough to create many challenging puzzles, but the layout of the game’s stages demanded a ton of creative thinking to progress.

You can only activate your gravity-flipping power if you’re close to a section of roof, which is what keeps players from making the game too easy for themselves. The few times that is possible often means that glowing barriers will be popping up during your descent, requiring careful weaving and dodging to sneak by. If it’s not that, there are often blast doors, activation buttons that need pressing, or some other hazard complicating things. You’ll need to factor in some specific gravity changes to get somewhere fast enough or nail a perfect landing to escape the facility.

The game does have a few secrets, but seeing a hidden location and being able to get to it are very different things. Standpoint’s secrets are location-based, requiring multiple complex gravity changes, often in midair, to reach. Using walls that only break with momentum, you might have to fall through several different hallways using split-second timing at every corner. Knowing exactly when and how to make those changes will add a lot of challenge to anyone who’s having too easy a time playing the main game.

Standpoint’s gravity flipping mechanic sounds like simplicity itself, but like Portal and other solid puzzle platformers before it, the mechanic is used in creative ways to create areas that will challenge your mind. Being able to make any wall into the floor doesn’t make your life any easier, but it does make for some entertaining mental exercises.

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