What in the hell is happening?

Open-world adventure, forma.8, comes to mobile

iOS Universal, PC/Mac •

Being old and lazy, I hadn’t heard of forma.8 until yesterday. It’s been on Steam since February, but that’s Alex’s domain, and I hate stepping on his toes. Plus, did I mention I’m lazy? Searching Steam for new games just isn’t my bag.

Luckily, forma.8 has arrived on what is exactly my bag: the App Store. Retitled forma.8 GO, it brings the open-world exploration and action to our small screens. Oh, and it’s on sale.

Just because I’m now aware of forma.8 doesn’t mean I have any clue what the hell it actually is. The blurb states it’s an open-world action/adventure game with a huge world to explore. So far so good. Let’s blurb the details:

– Explore a huge, open world full of secrets
– Solve ancient mysteries
– Gain new power-ups to progress in your adventure
– Fight deadly enemies and face powerful bosses
– Delve into a deep and cryptic lore
– Beautifully hand-drawn vector graphics

See, I told you it sounded pretty good. The mobile version is available for both iOS Universal and AppleTV, if that’s your bag. Lot’s of bags in today’s post. It’s also on sale right now, so you can pick it up for 35% off.

I’m going to see if I can get a review on this one, but with summer currently in full swing, I don’t want to make any promises. Watch the trailer and see what you think.

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Notable Replies

  1. js619 says:

    I’ve heard a lot of hype about this one, but I’d love to read a review first. Is it a platformer? Quick reflexes required? Everything I’ve read says it’s “Metroidvania” and I must be getting old since I have no idea what that means.

    Review over at 148apps (I think?) said the controls were a little clunky and hard to use, but didn’t say much about the game itself otherwise…

  2. I don’t know either game at all, but I assume “Metroidvania” means a cross between Super Metroid and Castlevania

  3. js619 says:

    How I wish that were helpful lol. I (vaguely) remember Castlevania but don’t think I ever played Metroid…

  4. Never played either one. Just familiar with the names. :slight_smile:

  5. Yeah, basically metroidvania just means 2d platformer with a single large map that gradually expands as you acquire more abilities that unlock new areas. (like getting a double jump ability makes you able to get past a walled off section, or a fire ability that lets you burn away obstacles)

  6. I’d love to see a review here, but here’s the PocketGamer review to tide you over:

    And I’m sure @Pitta will be along to comment on the game–I hadn’t heard of the game before he first brought it up, and I know he’s a big fan.

    Given that this game currently features two of my favorite words–“launch discount”–I’m going to buy it now and will weigh in later.

  7. Pitta says:


    I’m love with forma.8
    It’s a great metroidvania…think Aquaria meets Waking Mars meets Another World.
    Atmosphere is awesome…you are stranded in this alien world and you have to figure everything out, old school style.
    Tons of exploration, bosses, puzzles…
    I’m 5 hours in, around 30 percent of the game according to the save menu.
    Can wait to go in bed with headphones and continue to ‘live’ in its alien world.
    Game is not easy AT ALL, mind you.

    You can also check Steam reviews, all but one very positive.

  8. Metroidvania is one of my favorite video game (sub)genres, so consider my interest piqued.

  9. Pitta says:

    Played all night till impossible hours…stuck at a mega puzzle and a nasty boss.
    Dreamed few hours on how to beat it.
    Woke up…fired up the game…just solved the grand puzzle AND beat the boss, got my second power…now back exploring every single temple.

    What a glorious game, I’m in love.

  10. js619 says:

    I’m trying to hold out for a review, but I’m having a hard time resisting @Pitta’s enthusiasm!

  11. Thank you for that! I was one of those in the dark as to what the term “Metroidvania” described. :sunglasses:

    I see that TA also defined the term in their Game of the Week post, kudos to them for that:

    … it’s a Metroidvania style game which means the entire thing takes place in one humongous, interconnected map and as you play you’ll unlock new items and abilities which will open up new pathways until eventually you’ve unlocked the entire thing. You play as a tiny exploration probe and unlike most Metroidvanias which are platformer-based, in this one you actually fly around meaning you can go in all directions.

    Edit: Oh, yeah, I went ahead and bought it, thanks everyone for the info. :sunglasses:

  12. I’m really enjoying this game. One of the more enjoyable arcade games that I’ve played on the iPad in quite awhile. It is a steal at the current price. I’ve been playing with a Nimbus MFi controller on a new 12.9 iPad Pro.

    The game starts out simple and really gives you a chance to learn how it works as you go along. However, it will likely require a bit of backtracking and retrying things to get through some areas. This is one of the hallmarks of “Metroidvania” games. You will find that after you find some new abilities, you will be able to get past areas that were impossible before that point.

  13. Another World

    …just kidding…but I go that vibe as well from the visuals…maybe I bite (I-have-to- many-games™)

  14. Waking Mars was a great game. This has me interested.

    How twitchy is the game? Is it like Walking Mars or does it require faster reflexes and/ or a controller? I find I’m less into platformers that are more about quick action instead of thinking. Yes to Waking Mars, no to Badland.

  15. js619 says:

    I grabbed this last week based on @Pitta… not the first time he’s influenced me into a purchase, and probably won’t be the last. I was nervous about the quick reflex twitchiness required, but it’s actually not too bad - your robot probe thing doesn’t move unless you move, so you can stop and puzzle things out. I’m loving the art style too, very Limbo-esque. I haven’t really scratched the depths of the game yet, but I am enjoying it so far. It might have to get installed on my iPad though; I find the screen to be a bit small for a game like this on the iPhone.

  16. Pitta says:

    Just completed the game.

    It was ABSOLUTELY GLORIOUS with one scene that became an instant classic in my videogame culture.

    Loved every second of it…from the initial slow exploration, to the frantic boss battles, to the clever puzzles.

    I have still one puzzle to sole and I wonder what happens…I completed the game at 76 percent.

    If anyone played it…I would LOVE to discuss the ending.

  17. Been playing and, wow, is it pretty. Still only about 10% in, so I have a lot to figure out yet. Wish things weren’t so opaque. For example, I found an artefact…but have no idea what that means. Is it something I can use, or just a MacGuffin? I have no idea. Likewise with other trinkets I’ve found. One seemed to be a key, but it opened a gate thing that doesn’t seem to do anything?

    I get that it’s trying to smother the player in ambiance, but a tip on what the hell is going on every now and then would be nice. Like I said, I only really just started, too, so I’m still figuring things out. A little more time in the game might reveal everything or at least become intuitive enough that I can’t believe I was ever confused. It could happen.

  18. Pitta says:

    The more you’ll play, the more you’ll understand how the world ‘works’ and how your probe works too, including powers and things you’ll acquire.

    I guess with artifact you mean an hexagon…I don’t want to spoil it but yeah, you will use them…be patient and you will figure it out how, when and where you will use it (hint…not now…you have to play a lot more).

    I completed the game but realized I got the bad ending (there are multiple ones)…I’m now figuring out things and puzzles…pure awesomeness but damn…it’s so hard.

  19. js619 says:

    Did you play on your phone or iPad? Just curious if the larger screen makes solving puzzles easier but hinders control…

  20. I’ve tried on both and found the iPad easier to control. My finger keeps slipping off the screen on my phone, and my little probe just stops going.

  21. Pitta says:

    I found easier to control on iPhone (and being a 6S is way smoother) but I played the game on iPad Air where you notice more the little details and animations.
    I don’t think it really change puzzle wise.

    If you have a more up to date iPad, I would advice to play there.

    I wish it had iCloud sync.

  22. Pitta says:

    Just 100% forma.8 and finally got the real ending.

    Absolutely GLORIOUS, awesome Metroidvania which gave me my sci-fi fix and the some.
    Some puzzles where really mind bending.

    Highly recommended.

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