tl;dr -> Besides Not the Robots, I haven't encountered a challenging, charming game that constantly ridicules you for being incompetent. 11/10 reminds me of my gf.
I was very excited to play this game because of the stealth platforming mechanics, and I was quite satisfied with my gameplay experience.
If you like platformers, puzzle/timing-based gameplay, stealth elements, speedruns, and a good challenge, then you will enjoy this game.
The aesthetics are nice - the amount of detail in the levels and character assets are decent. The levels can get repetitive in appearance, but the different puzzles you have to deal with help keep the game interesting. The music and sounds are very good and adds to the atmosphere of the game, although I prefer to play my own. An funny component of the game is text written on the walls - usually to help give you hints. Many times, however, it will change to mock you if you make a mistake and die.
The controls are simple and easy to learn - I prefer using a controller, but the keyboard is just as good. The story and tutorial is quick and helpful. The learning curve is minimal to moderate depending on your experience with puzzle platformers - there are quite a number of timing-based puzzles, and I think these are the most difficult (and frustrating) parts of the game. Every few levels introduce new gameplay mechanics, and these occur at reasonable rates.
Gameplay consists of you moving around the map, unlocking the door to the next stage by triggering switches - as you progress through the game, you will have to trigger more and more switches. There are a variety of areas, each with their own levels - at the end of each area is a "boss" level, where an all-seeing eye must be avoided. Your character's stealth goggles will change color to indicate how visible your character is (red = completely visible; green = hidden; yellow = partially visible). If you are seen by enemy robots, they will instantly kill you depending on how close you are - if you are within their field of vision (this will always be visible as you play, indicated by a triangular cone), but not their kill range, then they will investigate the area where they last spotted you. Cameras may activate hazards, usually an insta-kill laser. As you progress, you will have to manipulate more things in each level. For example, initially, you just have to avoid patrolling robots. Later on, you will also have to move the robots (using switches) to position them on top of pressure-sensitive plates, allowing you to reach other parts of the level.
Upon completing an area, you can replay levels you've already beaten to unlock new character suits for that stage. For example, after completing level 1-2 (area 1, stage 2) for the second time, you will unlock the stealth suit for that stage. If you unlock a suit for 3 levels of an area, you will unlock that suit for the entire area. Other suits include a teleporter - you can throw/drop 2 different teleporters (blue and orange); and a decoy suit - deploy a static image of yourself to fool cameras/robots. There is also a special collectible available in some of the levels, which take some extra work to get to.
One of the strongest aspects of this game is the variety of puzzles you encounter - the way each new element is introduced and implemented is very well done. I am on area 4, and there have been many new challenges to deal with - some drove me absolutely crazy. A word of caution - if you like puzzlers, but do not favor timing-based ones, then you may be turned off by a few of the levels. Although the puzzles can be fairly difficult, the game is not particularly unforgiving - the checkpoint system is very good and will ensure you do not have to backtrack too often.
Overall, Stealth ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ plays as a great puzzle platformer, and anyone interested in the genre - especially stealth themes and the potential for speedruns - should give this game a try.
DJSF @DJSF's Rogue Reviews