forma.8 looks like a beautiful, elegant Metroidvania

Remember when every trailer tried to invoke excitement through the use of dubstep? It was a dark period for promotional videos, and one that (otherwise gorgeous) Metroidvania forma.8 channels with its noisy launch trailer. Despite that, this lovely-lookin' sidescrolling exploration game looks like something you might enjoy, providing you're a fan of Nifflas-style platformers, and other minimalist games that create a peaceful atmosphere through their use of colour, animation and sound design.

You don't play as a person in this one; instead, you play as a probe, and as such you won't be waiting impatiently to get your double/high jump abilities, so you can leap to previously inaccessible areas. Nope, you can fly from the start here, as you investigate a stylish and mysterious alien planet. From everything I've read and seen, forma.8 reminds me heavily of the wonderful Knytt series, but with added combat and bosses, because some people want those, I guess. Look, I'll put the over-excitable launch trailer below—but stick around for a better one after that.

forma.8 can be had from the Humble Store here, or from Steam here, with a slight Steam discount if you pick it up in the next few days. Developer MixedBag previously brought the world the tough, colourful 3D shooter Futuridium, which was given an expanded 'deluxe' version following the free original release. (Thanks, RPS.)

Tom Sykes

Tom loves exploring in games, whether it’s going the wrong way in a platformer or burgling an apartment in Deus Ex. His favourite game worlds—Stalker, Dark Souls, Thief—have an atmosphere you could wallop with a blackjack. He enjoys horror, adventure, puzzle games and RPGs, and played the Japanese version of Final Fantasy VIII with a translated script he printed off from the internet. Tom has been writing about free games for PC Gamer since 2012. If he were packing for a desert island, he’d take his giant Columbo boxset and a laptop stuffed with PuzzleScript games.