You might have a lot of friends but few are the friends that can help you save the Universe.
Toodee and Topdee is an adventure produced by two brothers, Gonen and Ori, that mixes action, 2D Platforming, and Top-Down Puzzling in a fantastic way, with a light-hearted sense of humor and a peculiar graphic style.
The story starts at the beginning, I mean literally, the beginning of the Universe and how the planets were created by an Entity called Aleph. Each world was vastly different, one world was completely in 2D in which they could jump while another world was completely in top-down perspective where the inhabitants could move boxes. To keep track of potential errors, also known as glitches, Aleph created Toodoo, his right hand.
As Aleph continues populating the Universe things started to get a little bit out of hand. To help restore order he created the Semicolon, which put everything back in balance. Nearing the end of this process, of creating new worlds, Toodoo realized that his purpose was reaching his final moments. He then decided to steal the all-important Semicolon.
Everything fell into chaos with the absence of the Semicolon. This is where we meet our heroes Toodee and Topdee, that never should’ve been able to interact with each other because they are from different worlds. But, since their worlds merged together they now have to work in unison to retrieve the semicolon and restore the balance to the Universe.
Gameplay-wise is where this game shines. Each stage is a unique puzzle where the player has to switch between both protagonist and their different perspectives to reach the goal. The fact that the player has to achieve this with just directional controls and one action button, makes it seem simple at first but you quickly discover how deep the rabbit hole goes.
The devs made brilliant use of each aspect of the perspective and how they interact with each other in many intuitive ways. The player has to think beyond the perspective itself and combine both efforts to solve tasks that at first glance seem trivial for one character. Imagine having to jump off a box but being unable to move it, having to rely on the other character and their unique ability to reach that end.
There are 4 Worlds, each with their individual theme, to traverse before reaching the hiding place of the Semicolon. Each of these worlds is characterized by 20 stages that increase in difficulty and complexity, culminating in an epic face-off against the Guardian of that realm.
To help create the atmosphere we have to mention the soundtrack that fits like a glove and does an awesome job at conveying the appropriate mood for the situation. Especially the boss themes, they are all bangers.
It is possible to enjoy this puzzle title alone or with a friend, through local co-op or Steam remote play. Personally, I would recommend playing this in co-op. Let’s be honest, two heads think better than one and the added chaos makes for a good couple of giggles.
Toodee and Topdee is a really fun take on the puzzle-platformer that adds that little something spicy to the genre. In every single new level, there is a new twist that makes things feel fresh and expand what the player has learned before. With 7 hours of gameplay, a lot of brain cells burned and a lot of screams of success I still feel the urge to replay certain levels. Definitely a title that is easy to recommend.
Oh, by the way, the game doesn’t end with returning the semicolon to its former place. There’s actually more to find, you just need to pay attention to the ladybugs.
This review was written in co-op mode ( Thanks Samusin! ).
[This review is based on a retail build of the game for Steam, provided by Ryan Brown]