Eversion

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Eversion is an indie platformer that shows that a simple change of graphics and music can change the tone of the whole game.

ConsolePC/Mac/Linux
DeveloperZaratustra Productions
PublisherZaratustra Productions
GenrePlatformer, puzzle, horror
Release Year2010
PurchaseDownload from Steam.

Sometimes, a game can surprise you by changing up the rules. You thought you were playing an innocent platformer. That is, until you played a game like Eversion.

From just the banner alone, you might be thinking, “Orion, what the hell are you doing posting this during October? This is the opposite of horror!” Well, give me a sec. I just barely got started.

To begin with, the game gives you a quote from H. P. Lovecraft when you launch it.

Sounds—possibly musical—heard in the night from other worlds or realms of being.

Yeah. Off to a great start, aren’t we?

Eversion is the creation of indie developer Guilherme S. Tows of Zaratustra Productions. While the original free version is still available online, the enhanced version is also available for purchase. If you can, go ahead with the enhanced edition for a better experience.

So now, we’re going to see why I’m posting this review on October. And you know what that means…

 

A Slow Descent into the Abyss

Eversion gameplay

Eversion is a simple platformer made in the likeness of classic Super Mario Bros. games, with a Kirby-esque aesthetic. In fact, the creatures in the game resemble Lololos to me.

The levels start off as bright and colorful, with appropriately “happy” music. Occasionally, you’ll find spots that cause the sky to change color and even background music. By using the Eversion ability at these spots, you can change the look and feel of the level, which will also change up the obstacles.

Eversion gameplay

What was previously in the background may now be in the foreground. You may be able to walk on clouds, pass through bushes and break certain blocks that have weakened.

This is where the puzzle elements come into play. The main collectibles are Gems, which serve a single purpose: unlocking the final level. You may also find a hidden letter in each level, spelling out, “EVERSION.” These are typically in hard-to-reach places that may require you to use the Eversion ability to find. These serve no purpose other than for an achievement. To collect everything, you need to use the Eversion ability at appropriate areas, which can sometimes require planning ahead of time.

What’s notable about Eversion is how the game progressively gets darker with each level, showing a much more sinister side to this seemingly cute game.

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Well, I haven’t seen such morbid imagery in a seemingly innocent retro game since playing Monster Party for the NES.

So yeah. As you continue using the Eversion ability, the environment becomes bleaker and hollower. The enemy blobs start off as happy, then will later become depressed. Then they will freeze in place, with a single, unblinking eye.

Eversion gameplay
Clearly, they have seen some shit.

The worlds will rot away, becoming more desolate. Lethal thorns grow across the ground. The enemy blobs take on a more monstrous appearance. And if you jump on them, they squirt out a fountain of blood. Rocks become invincible monsters. An evil force is after you, slowly taking over your game…

Eversion game over screen

By the way, if you haven’t seen all this coming from just the title of the game alone, then here is dictionary.com’s definition of ‘eversion.’

n. a turning or being turned outward or inside out.

Isn’t that just lovely imagery?  Let’s turn our game inside out so we can see it at its blackest!

My one complaint is more to do with technical problems than the game itself. I can’t get full screen mode to work properly for me. Whenever I try it, my monitor changes resolution but the game itself is offscreen. So I had to painstakingly resize the window so that it’s proportional. Other than that one little issue, I have no other problems with the game.

Eversion game ending

Is that all there is to Eversion? Yeah, pretty much. It’s a very short game with only eight levels, the last of which is only accessible if you collected all of the Gems. But what makes it particularly memorable is that descent from a bright and cheery tone to the dark and demonic. There are a total of three endings to find, one of which having more specific requirements. Eversion is a charming little indie game that shows that simplicity can still be very effective with the right kinds of innovation.

Eversion

$4.99
8.5

GAMEPLAY

8.0/10

GRAPHICS

8.5/10

SOUNDTRACK

9.0/10

Pros

  • Simple gameplay with the right kind of innovation.
  • The slow shift of tone that stands out in the game.
  • Cute graphics.
  • Catchy chiptunes.

Cons

  • N/A
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