Seeing a seemingly innocent world turn into the outlandish bizarre with every type of strange creeping in, while having dark yet humorous appeal is hard thing to pull off.
Any game that can manage this, I have to give some respect. Stick it to the Man is a 2.5D platforming puzzle game that does this.
At first glanced the game seems childish and possibly aimed at younger individuals. The cardboard cut environment definitely assists in the idea. You are Ray, a hard hat tester, which involves getting things dropped on your head to check the helmet quality.
On your way home from work an accident with a canister containing an alien landing on your head leaves you with some weird and useful powers. You gain the ability to read minds and have a strange luminous third arm growing out of your head which allows you to pick up, pull at and swing around the environment.
These mechanics are what helps you solve all manner of problems and puzzles. The mind reading mechanic offers for some amusement as well. All the characters have somewhat unusually crazy things floating around in their heads.
When game gets peculiarly uncanny, you can’t help but be intrigued.
Not far into the game this strangeness becomes apparent. For starters the character art style has its own kind of creepy. One of your first missions is saving a man from committing suicide and later feeding a human arm to some crocodile.
I would hope no young children pick up this game. It turns dark rather quickly, but it’s a quirky sort of dark, one that I can appreciate.
Each Level is a whole puzzle in itself and roaming across it has you finding stickers and discovering things that may be needed across the Level. The 2D side scrolling element works well and the luminous hand allows you to move through it easily enough and assist in overcoming obstacles.
With Levels ranging from a dank asylum to dark space there is great variety of scenery on offer.
The music fits really well within these environments and gives an eerily complacent tone. The Puzzles are both amusing and offer a decent enough challenge.
The game may not be long but with a creepy art style and bizarre story it takes disturbing to whole different level. There is no good reason not to play it, especially if you have a dark and quirky sense of humour.