A Pixel Story is a devious 2D puzzle platformer that charts the evolution of video games. You must use your Magical Teleportation Hat to explore 6 increasingly detailed zones on your quest to reach the core of The System to stop the evil OS and save the world.
User reviews:
Overall:
Positive (24 reviews) - 83% of the 24 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Mar 30, 2015

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Reviews

“One of the best looking and sounding experiences indie games can give you”
9/10 – Gaming Nation

“A Pixel Story is a masterpiece”
97% – Mouse n Joypad

“The kind of ‘die, die, repeat’ challenge that will grab plenty of masochistic gamers”
Kotaku

About This Game

A Pixel Story is a devious, old-school, 2D puzzle-platformer that charts the evolution of video games from the very beginning. You embark on an epic quest to the core of The System aided by the mystical powers unlocked by your Magical Teleportation Hat. As you progress through the four graphical generations your world becomes increasingly detailed and complicated, and your journey through video game history becomes ever more perilous.

You must explore a colourful and diverse world, unlock the awesome power of your snappy Magical Teleportation Hat, traverse 6 large free-form zones, interact with a diverse range of NPCs, stop the evil OS and, of course, save the world.

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows XP SP3
    • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo 2.4ghz or equivalent
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Shader Model 3.0, 3rd Generation Intel Core HD Graphics (2500/4000)
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Storage: 1500 MB available space
Customer reviews
Customer Review system updated! Learn more
Overall:
Positive (24 reviews)
Recently Posted
MooseHowl
1.3 hrs
Posted: June 7
Strange jumping physics, pixel perfect jumping required even outside of challenge rooms, and no way to rebind the controls. It looked and sounded like a charming game at the beginning, but the bad controls grated on me too much to keep going.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
LunaStar
5.8 hrs
Posted: March 1
Its a cute platformer with some fun platforming and basic story but the controls are why i can't recomend this game! You are NEVER standing still! Not even on the menu screen! When you want to exit the game and it says yes or no the select is shooting left and right really fast that you have to hit the button at the right time just to exit! On top of that there are parts of the game where you have to stand on a thin platform while it's rising waiting to get to the higher platform but your character is always moving left naturally so it makes it really frustrating moving your joy stick left and right just to struggle to keep him on!!
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SSpectre
7.4 hrs
Posted: January 5
Currently, the game is a functional, attractive chore without the sense of accomplishment that doing actual chores would provide.

Full review:
http://www.cubed3.com/review/2103/1/a-pixel-story-pc.html
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NotMLGStudios
1.3 hrs
Posted: December 2, 2015
This is a beautiful game! It's like pc mario but EVEN BETTER!! Truly a hidden gem of the steam game world.
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Chaytel
9.0 hrs
Posted: October 29, 2015
A charming puzzle-platformer that gets more complex and elaborate the further in you get. What begins as very simple platforming quickly becomes a fun and inventive trip though several unique worlds, each adding on to the existing mechanics in play, ranging from a teleporting mechanic to having programmable npcs that need to perform specific tasks to help you get through an area.

The music and art is, as mentioned, charming and lovely, and the game's sense of humor is very much worn on its sleeve. Highly recommended.
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BuzzySion
14.4 hrs
Posted: September 27, 2015
Really anoying, its a nice concept but for a platformer the controls are kinda clumsy and not rensponsive enough, I got stuck for 20 minutes in 3 parts wich was really frustrating, specially becouse I didn't know where to go in the next part of the puzzle and had to do it all over again.
As I said nice concept but not really impemented nicely enough, dont recomend
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DevilSquirrel
150.7 hrs
Posted: September 16, 2015
Great game with loads of interesting puzzles and challenges.
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Itheory
29.7 hrs
Posted: August 22, 2015
Here is my first review of a game on steam, english isn't my mother tongue. Sorry for the mistakes, I'll maybe update it later to give a french version too.

I've played the game without controler, only with my keyboard. Done this review after finishing the game 100% except deathrun.

PROS :

A Pixel Story is probably one of the best games i've played so far. I had it on my wishlist for two or three months and I finally decided to buy it as I was looking for an hard 2D plateformer. The game in itself isn't super hard to finish (I mean, in a first time); even if there are some passages where you can find a bit more of difficulty. The story is hilarious (lot of references) and the atmosphere was wonderful. As a fan of the genre, I've found exactly the same feeling than when I played Crash Bandicoot on my PS1 when I was child (atmospherically speaking).
But, if you want to finish it to 100%, this game is really hard. In each location, there are two or three "challenge rooms" where you have to finish it without dying and give a real challenge (that's why they are called "challenge rooms", right?).
Each challenge room finished will give you a "piece of memory" that you need to complete the game, and ... it has been a hard time to complete all of these, my fingers are still bleeding .. but I had a great time.

CONS :

If you are not a fan of die-and-retry 2D plateformers, you'll maybe like this game, but you won't like completing it to 100%.
Not a lot to say ... If I want to be the devil's advocate I would say that a few things are badly indicated but you can totally find it by yourself, taking a bit more time to do it.

SUMMARY :

Totally worth the money and I feel a bit sad that this game hasn't more players, he totally deserves it.. Thanks to Lamplight Studios.
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PapíDimmi
2.8 hrs
Posted: June 14, 2015
This game is amazing.

I hate that you can't change controls, but the game is still amazing.

I rate this game 1,543 Magical Teleportation Hats out of 1,545 Magical Teleportation Hats.
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coldReactive (Iyeru)
2.9 hrs
Posted: April 27, 2015
Hard, inspired designs by Cave Story, and video game references galore. I rage-quitted after getting to the volcano, but don't let that stop you! Great game! Great soundtrack!
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Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
37 of 46 people (80%) found this review helpful
Recommended
16.6 hrs on record
Posted: April 23, 2015
Introduction
At first glance, A Pixel Story seems like a generic and simple platformer, but I was really surprised when I started playing it. I am not sure exactly where to start with A Pixel Story, but I would like to say that 99% is amazing and A Pixel Story is a hidden gem. This game starts out really strong with really cool references to old games and many more things as well. (There is a character call “Not Batman”, One location looks very similar to sonic, and plenty more. I don’t want to ruin them all for my.) The story starts out with a game of pong and something goes wrong and the pixel/ball/you gets made into a person. Then you get thrown into the game world. (I would say more of the story, but I don’t want to ruin it.) Along with all of the cool references and the really interesting story, A Pixel Story has amazing retro sound effects. The level design is outstanding as well. The levels has secret areas where you can collect the coins, “memories”, and find the different challenge room doors. A Pixel Story is almost perfect besides two things. The text between characters is very long and could really use a voice over. As well as, the game’s difficulty spikes at certain points without any tutorials, but with some thought you should be able to figure everything out.
Pros

  • Cool/Funny easter eggs
  • Great platforming
  • Amazing level design
  • Challenging challenge rooms
  • Plenty of places to explore
  • Interesting Story
  • Awesome mechanics


Cons

  • Long text between characters
  • Difficulty spikes



Conclusion

A Pixel Story is an amazing platforming with a really interesting story and tons of really cool references to old titles/pop culture. A Pixel Story is really a hidden gem and if you even slightly enough playing platformers you need to play this game. I had to think long and hard to find something that I really disliked about A Pixel Story, but I didn’t have to look far to find tons of great things. A Pixel Story is a must have.

Video Review

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DhnCm8cTSOQ

-HiPFiRED


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32 of 40 people (80%) found this review helpful
11 people found this review funny
Recommended
6.5 hrs on record
Posted: March 30, 2015
***Disclaimer: Copy provided by the developer***

Imagine if the developers of FEZ, Braid and Super Meat Boy had an orgy and invited the guys who did Portal as well as the dude who created the Flashgame The Company Of Myself and the guys who did The Swapper were spying on them through the window. If they all had conceived a baby that night, it would be A Pixel Story.

Nevermind that fact though, because the game wears its influences on its sleeve and isn't ashamed by that in the slightest. As you might infer from the line-up above consisting mostly of puzzle-platformers, A Pixel Story is obviously in the same genre as those.

You start your life as a pixel. But not just as any old pixel. You are in fact the ball from the legendary arcade classic Pong. But something is afoot in your system and you are violently ripped out of the game and through inter-dimensional portals you catch glimpses of other worlds you are about to visit. In a darkened room, shadowy figures initiate a sequence that gives you a humanoid body and you're let loose into the first world.

As is typical for modern puzzle-platformers made by people who grew up in the 80's and 90's, A Pixel Story boasts a retro-aesthetic. Or so I thought initially, because similar to Evoland, the art-style changes over the course of the game. You start out in an 8-bit inspired world and after you beat that, you enter a higher resolution 16-bit world. After a third transition, bits don't matter anymore and the art-style has changed to one that is heavily inspired by Braids watercolor aesthetic. Similar to that, the music evolves as well, changing from simple chiptunes to more modern arrangements.

What doesn't really change - except during the final level - is the gameplay. Early on in the game, you are awarded with a hat (Gomez from FEZ sends his greetings). This hat has a special power. It let's you use the hat as a teleporter. Meaning you can drop it anywhere in the level and with the push of a button teleport back to where the hat is. And that's basically it. That's your main mechanic outside of pulling levers, using jump-pads or just jumping from platform to platform.

Though as with any good game with a deceptively simple mechanic, A Pixel Story manages to pull out a lot of depth from it, and with that a certain maliciousness. The puzzles increase steadily in complexity and by the end there are a couple of brain twisters in there that don't make life easy for you. Or at least for me. If you are a better man than I am, you can also enter certain challenge rooms, though that name has to be the understatement of the year. Again, drawing from my pool of comparisons at the top, these challenge rooms take the Super Meat Boy approach at game design, just throwing everything at you simultaneously, only it's even more sadistic than the adventures of Meat Boy the skinless one.

With all that talk about gameplay and aesthetic, I almost forgot to talk about the story part of A Pixel Story. Or better the lack thereof. Now there is a story that's being told, you're the chosen pixel to bring down the Operator of the System and set all the programs in it free. And over the course of the game you meet all sorts of different characters inspired by computers. Such as the Kernel, a rich philanthropist, or Search, your trusty partner and exposition dump. And he really is that, so very little is shown, most is told through lengthy dialogue or some background information from memory crystals you need to collect. But there's really not much to this world beyond that. We never see how or why the old Operator has been challenged by the new one, we never know the motivation of the current Operator. We're just the chosen one set to bring him down. We never learn who these shadowy figures at the start were that transformed your pixelly shape into a person. Or at least I never did. I assume to get the real ending, you'd have to beat all the challenge rooms and acquire all the memory crystals in order to unlock the final ending. So I at the very least will never find out, because the game is just too difficult for me to invest so much more time into it, and I would've liked it better if I'd have been give a bit more closure for just finishing the game and beating the final boss.

Outside of that, the game is chock-full of pop-culture references. You'll find a caricature program of Arnold Schwarzenegger as The Terminator and even a side-quest about a sleeping princess that turns out to be inspired by Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Though one that definitely put a smile on my face was a party where the band plays a chiptune rendition of Haddaways classic "What is Love".

If it sounds like I'm down on the game because of the lacking narrative, don't fret. Because all the other elements are fantastic. It's got a simple, easily understandable central mechanic and the puzzles are designed cleverly enough to provide plenty entertainment and challenge for a player and then some. Even though it lacks a unified aesthetic - given the fact that it changes with every new area - all the styles it employs are executed competently and the music that accompanies you on your adventures is really good. Since the game takes a lot of inspiration from a variety of different sources, as mentioned in this review, I can't call it innovative, but sometimes a game just doesn't have to be innovative to be good. Even an indie game. It's a really fun game and I can wholeheartedly recommend A Pixel Story to fans of puzzle-platformers that aren't stingy with presenting challenging obstacles for players to overcome.
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19 of 20 people (95%) found this review helpful
Recommended
6.3 hrs on record
Posted: April 9, 2015
Ever dream of a pixelated puzzle platformer adventure in a universe full of parody? A Pixel Story gives you just that and grants you control of a magical hat that lets you leave it somewhere and then teleport back to it in order to traverse a fun filled land. None of these traversal puzzles feel like mysteries. You'll always know how to solve them. Its just performing them requires timing. The teleportation puzzles go from easy to timing perfect jumps and warps to make it deeper into the game. You don't start with the hat, or even clothes for that matter. You'll quickly obtain the hat once you get it back from a seagull that steals it. As for the clothes, you're given those pretty quick.

There's a good sense of size and scope when the camera pulls out to show you how big an area is. A Pixel Story is almost MetroidVania-esque, because it feels like an open world, but you won't obtain any abilities to get to new places outside of using your hat. The game is split into sections each with two "worlds." To travel back between these sections, you can warp back to your bedroom where you can leap between the sections as time periods. You're not allowed to have your hat in the first section, which is a shame and a missed opportunity. Each world has a theme everything from a bland grassland, to a lava pit and even the Bat cave. The game makes a lot of parodies of Batman, Gordon Freeman, and even the Terminator. These comical cameos are pretty entertaining and shocking to see. You'll give a crowbar to Freebird and see a bat signal only to have it fly away. There's a lot of comedy, charm and dialog boxes here. In fact an over abundance of dialog boxes when nothing needs to be said. You even have a helper that consistently appears with tips or even to talk about pancakes.

The graphics start out pretty basic with retro aesthetic and minimal colors, but get better as you progress because the game has you traveling through different eras of video game history. Everything continues to look more detailed. The backgrounds start to stand out more and more from simplistic to rich with beautiful fidelity. Your character stays nearly identical from start to finish. He consists of only a head, body, feet and hands, but no arms. So he's similar to Rayman, but feels like a country bumpkin with his magical red hat, overalls and the fact he starts out helping farmers, moonshiners and even a KFC Cornall whose band plays in instrumental "What is Love?" Again this game takes liberties with its parody.

The game amounts to collecting enough gems (memories) to get transported to the next world. Each world has eight gems that you'll find either by looking hard enough or completing a quest. There are a lot of quirky characters that give you quests, the silly thing is they'll ask you to accept it or not. Well why wouldn't you accept the mission? Then you'll have to obtain an item and bring it back to them. Of course between you and the item, you'll need to flip switches, jump on moving platforms, and springboard yourself from point A to point B. It feels like an old school role-playing game with this many fetch quests.

A Pixel Story plays pretty simple on your keyboard or 360 controller. Other than your menu, there are three major buttons; a jump, a leave your hat and recall your hat button. Once you leave your hat, you can teleport back to it by using the same button. Using the teleport leads to more interesting jumps such as at the height of a jump, leaving your hat, then with your next jump, immediately teleport at the start of the jump to appear at your hat and jump higher. You'll use that mechanic a lot with spring boards or even to save yourself from falling into a bed of whirling gears. It doesn't get more complex than that, but it becomes about angles and hat positions as well as your warp timing. If you ever leave your hat somewhere and travel out of sight, your hat gets its own little window to show what its doing.

Your hat hovers in the air when you leave it, so its a good way to get over and under moving platforms or even get through shifting walls. The further you progress, the more tricks each world will have, such as gravity platforms that will hold your hat to them as they move. So the platform can take your hat through gears and you can teleport to your hat. Its a nice twist. Later, springboards get replaced by bounce wire. If you walk on it, you won't bounce, but if you fall on it, you maintain the height of your bounce. You can then use your hat jumping technique to increase the height of each bounce. Its a good way to keep things interesting late in the game.

There are no enemies, its all one hit hazards that kill you. Its still a forgiving game, because with every death, you'll respawn at your last checkpoint. These checkpoints are quite frequent and they even allow you to fast travel to previous checkpoints. This makes any backtracking a breeze, but I didn't feel like there was any backtracking except when I wanted to find all the gems. Your map also shows you where your objective is and you'll unlock sections of the map as you visit them. Even if these maps are somewhat big, it doesn't feel like there's all that much exploration. There are still secrets like walking through walls.

As you go through the game, you'll find coins scattered here and there. These coins unlock special challenge rooms. I took one look at each insane room and left. Each one seems to be a single screen full of cannons, conveyer belts, grinding gears and everything else you can imagine. You wind your way through to get a gem at the end. There are no checkpoints, because then you'd never be able to make it back to the door. At least these are optional. I know there are a lot of hardcore players out there, but I would have much preferred a bonus room or something more interesting than something as intense.

Some switches are timed so they turn into races for you to do what needs to get done before the switch resets. It puts pressure on you in what is otherwise a relaxing go at your own pace game. Once you get toward the end, you'll get pushed to act fast when there's a death beam following you up a vertically scrolling Recycling Bin.

There are a few moments that break up the puzzle platforming, such as taking a dive down a chute full of gears. At first you're following someone down that warns you when things are coming. Soon enough he breaks off and you're on your own. You'll have to weave your character down narrow corridors lined with deadly metal. That's a good way

While the game didn't feel like the game has many issues, I noticed specific worlds such as the Forest and the Bat Cave had lag or slow down. I assume from the detailed backgrounds. Turning my resolution down helped, but it was still noticeable even with V-Sync off. It did also crash to the desktop once in the six hours that I played, but the game auto saves pretty often just in case. Sometimes death forced me to get the coins I had just collected, other times it didn't. There are several grammar errors in the hundreds of dialog boxes, but I'm probably guilty of that as well.

A Pixel Story is a fun little game in the early worlds before it gets more difficult than fun. The challenge is never out of reach though as long as you put some effort into your timing. A good way to see the difficulty is to look at the achievements and see how drastic the drop off is between the achievements. The real enjoyment is from the surprises that come from cameos. I'd like to thank Tom for gifting me this game.
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8 of 9 people (89%) found this review helpful
Recommended
8.9 hrs on record
Posted: April 4, 2015
TL;DR: Check out my video at the end!

A Pixel Story is a very enjoyable game that puts a great spin on a traditional platforming genre. I love the Pixel-styled artwork as well as the numerous computer-related humor and gaming references throughout. The music is awesome, too!

Some of the level progression can be quite difficult, but it's not like they throw you at a wall from the beginning. The level design teaches you as you move forward, both giving you enough to learn how things work, and still able to rack your head around some obstacles. Their extra Challenge Rooms are definitely a control-breaker.

I don't think it shows much of it in the trailer video, but later on in the game it isn't just jumping on platforms anymore. There is a lot of timing and thinking involved to move on ahead. They really introduced some cool concepts with the teleporting ability, and I found myself enjoying the different parts.

I wish they integrated the story a bit better. You gain background story by collecting the Memory in the game, but it's usually just flavortext inside the menu. You can essentially progress through the game without ever reading any substantial storyline. NOTE: I've only played the beginning area, so that might change later on. But if you DO read it, it reveals quite a bit of history and story in the game that does open it up to more than just jumping around on platforms.

I don't play a lot of platforming games, but this is definitely a fun one. A bit difficult at times, but definitely satisfying.

8/10, I would recommend to any platform loving gamers out there.

And if you're still not sure, check out my First Look video below! I talk about the game concepts and show some gameplay.

https://youtu.be/Z8Icz2Gisl8
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7 of 8 people (88%) found this review helpful
Recommended
1.6 hrs on record
Posted: March 30, 2015
TL;DR:

A great puzzle-platformer that will delight as much as infuriate sitting at a great price point
Recommended 8/10

Synapsis:

You are a pixel from the classic game "Pong" that has fallen out of your original place in the game to a place deep in the system. You awaken to find a helpful robot named Search who informs you that you are the "Chosen One". You come to find out that this means you will be essentially repairing the system. You do this, following a few tutorial puzzles, with the help of a hat that allows you to save your position and thus transport back instantaneously when needed.

The puzzle difficulties ramp up quickly normally showing themselves to be more infuriating due to precise timing requirements and less about how much they boggle the mind. You will me made to do a minimum number of puzzles to acquire colored gems called "Memory" in order to advance in the story. In addition, more challenging puzzles are available by opening doors with the coins you pick up along the way.

As I am writing this review I am, I believe, still very early in the game and enjoying it thoroughly. The puzzles keep me on edge and though the story is fairly cliche, it is keeping me interested enough to continue speculation of whats to come.

Like puzzle games? Like platformers?....If the answer to either of these questions is yes I can recommend you pick this title up. The price tag is great for what you get, having seen recent titles as good as this going for twice the cost.
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5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
29.7 hrs on record
Posted: August 22, 2015
Here is my first review of a game on steam, english isn't my mother tongue. Sorry for the mistakes, I'll maybe update it later to give a french version too.

I've played the game without controler, only with my keyboard. Done this review after finishing the game 100% except deathrun.

PROS :

A Pixel Story is probably one of the best games i've played so far. I had it on my wishlist for two or three months and I finally decided to buy it as I was looking for an hard 2D plateformer. The game in itself isn't super hard to finish (I mean, in a first time); even if there are some passages where you can find a bit more of difficulty. The story is hilarious (lot of references) and the atmosphere was wonderful. As a fan of the genre, I've found exactly the same feeling than when I played Crash Bandicoot on my PS1 when I was child (atmospherically speaking).
But, if you want to finish it to 100%, this game is really hard. In each location, there are two or three "challenge rooms" where you have to finish it without dying and give a real challenge (that's why they are called "challenge rooms", right?).
Each challenge room finished will give you a "piece of memory" that you need to complete the game, and ... it has been a hard time to complete all of these, my fingers are still bleeding .. but I had a great time.

CONS :

If you are not a fan of die-and-retry 2D plateformers, you'll maybe like this game, but you won't like completing it to 100%.
Not a lot to say ... If I want to be the devil's advocate I would say that a few things are badly indicated but you can totally find it by yourself, taking a bit more time to do it.

SUMMARY :

Totally worth the money and I feel a bit sad that this game hasn't more players, he totally deserves it.. Thanks to Lamplight Studios.
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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
9.0 hrs on record
Posted: October 29, 2015
A charming puzzle-platformer that gets more complex and elaborate the further in you get. What begins as very simple platforming quickly becomes a fun and inventive trip though several unique worlds, each adding on to the existing mechanics in play, ranging from a teleporting mechanic to having programmable npcs that need to perform specific tasks to help you get through an area.

The music and art is, as mentioned, charming and lovely, and the game's sense of humor is very much worn on its sleeve. Highly recommended.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
117.1 hrs on record
Posted: April 13, 2015
looks great.
fun story.
old school hard.
more please.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
25.2 hrs on record
Posted: April 14, 2015
The most refreshing game on the store! A parody of the genre of computer games and how they've changed over the last 30 years. Love how the graphics keep improving as you travel through the genres and it keeps introduceing new mechanics to keep you on your toes from beginning to end. A great story and some really good music earns this game a 10 out of 10 from me. Never used to like platformers like Mario and Sonic, but if this is a taste of how platformers have evolved then I can honestly say I'm now a fan. Miss this and you will definately regret it!
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
Recommended
2.8 hrs on record
Posted: June 14, 2015
This game is amazing.

I hate that you can't change controls, but the game is still amazing.

I rate this game 1,543 Magical Teleportation Hats out of 1,545 Magical Teleportation Hats.
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