Pivot Pilot’s unique mechanics provides a new angle to the platforming genre; well, actually quite a few new angles to be exact.
The game follows Eli, a boy trapped in a testing facility filled to the brim with spikes, lasers, turrets and other deadly experiments out to kill him. Players guide Eli through each test with the aid of a robot arm.
Pivot Pilot plays similarly to Super Meat Boy in it’s platforming elements, as players must successfully navigate the stage avoiding death from many threats, like moving saw blades and death pits. However, the game’s robot arm adds a mechanical dimension to the platforming experience. Eli must interact with stage elements as well as control the arm to progress through the experiments. The arm is controlled by its three pivot points and serves as a moving platform for many of the game’s levels. Players must even sometimes use the arm and control Eli simultaneously to pass more challenging tests.
Gameplay is extremely polished and plays smoothly. Pivot Pilot’s clean controls and movement allows for player’s to input commands with precision. Moving the robot arm was challenging at first but became more familiar to move with use. Player’s control the arm with its three components, rotating each individually and simultaneously. The game’s otherwise simple controls allows for it to be easily picked up. Pivot Pilot also offers compatibility with a gamepad controller as well.
Level design is interesting and unique. Pivot Pilot stayed refreshing throughout its many levels and had many mechanics to play around with. Stages were varied and challenging. The game lies at a healthy, challenging difficulty, yet is addicting and enjoyable enough to keep players from being turned off from it. Some levels were only conquerable through intense patience and precision; death will become a very familiar concept. Unfortunately levels are only unlocked through completion, so if players get stuck, they are out of luck.
There are also hidden mini-games for players to find within Pivot Pilot. In harder to reach areas of the stage there are sometimes small arcade cabinets that Eli can interact with. Each has it’s own mini robot arm game to play. Its unlockable achievements and mini-games give the game some replay value.
Pivot Pilot has a nice, pixelated aesthetic with a pleasant darker color palette with well contrasted, colorful components in the stage. While repeated failure of levels may become frustrating, the upbeat and lively soundtrack kept the experience enjoyable.
Overall, Pivot Pilot is a well-designed platformer with a robot arm element adding pivotal diversity to the experience. With seamless gameplay and mechanics with challenging yet enjoyable stages, the game proves to be addicting. Its great graphical theme and soundtrack only further supplements the game’s stellar level design.
- Smooth gameplay and controls
- Difficult and challenging, yet fun level design
- GIANT ROBOT ARMS
- Players can get stuck on the more difficult levels and cannot progress
- Levels can become frustrating
Reviewed on: PC; Publisher: Deadspot Games; Developer: Deadspot Games; Players: Single player; Released: January 6, 2017; ESRB: Everyone; MSRP: $6.99; Official Site
Note: A promotional code was provided to Denkiphile for review purposes by the publisher