Review: And Yet it Moves

At a Glance

This game is recommended!
This game is not just good fun, it also stays fairly true to Christian moral values, making it a great addition to anyone's library!

ESRB Rating: E - Everyone
My Rating: Ages 6 and up
Genre: Puzzle Platformer
License: Commercial
Release Year: 2009
Review Published On: August 27th, 2016
Played on: Martha & Thaddeus

Available from:

Steam

Save System:

If you need to stop playing suddenly, you can pause the game by pressing ESC. Otherwise, your progress is automatically saved when you clear a level.

Summary of
Major Issues:

Just about everything in this game is made of paper, including your character. Taking too much damage will tear your character apart. They'll be put back together at the last checkpoint however, so no injury is permanent.

Screenshots

[view screenshot]
Evading the evil Demon Hamster

[view screenshot]
If this is rock paper, where are the scissors?

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More rock climbing



Game Overview

And Yet It Moves is a game about a little paper man in a larger paper world. All the player's character wants to do is reunite with the piece of paper he was originally sketched on, but there are a lot of things in his way. So it falls to you to guide him through the surreal (and dangerous) world he lives in.

Running and jumping only get you so far, however. The main way you'll get over obstacles is to rotate around your character. Gravity is always pulling everything towards the bottom of the screen, so by changing the orientation of the world, you change the direction things fall. This not only allows you to do impossible things like walk on walls or stand on ceilings, but it can also dislodge things like boulders or disturb the local creatures.

You'll also encounter sketched copies of your character throughout each level. These translucent figures at as checkpoints; when your character eventually gets ripped apart trying to make it to the next ledge, they'll respawn next to the last copy of themselves that they touched. Additionally, these sketched copies also act as signposts, helpfully pointing the way to the next checkpoint.

This was a fun experiment in style and surreal gameplay, but there's just one major flaw -- it can't run on Windows 10.

Points of Interest

Unique and interesting graphical style
Save for your character and his many outlined clones, the world is created through layers of torn photographs. The world looks like a living collage, and near the end of the game, things get more brilliant and amazing as the textures become like wrapping paper. All in all, the game has a peaceful, dreamlike feeling, even when the situation is a little dangerous.
Steam community features
While there are many achievements to earn throughout the game, many of them feel like afterthoughts or are obtained too easily to feel like they're worth it.
Multiple play modes
Once you've cleared a level in the main game, you can play it again in slightly different ways. These include speedruns, time trials and variants that limit how much you can rotate the world or rip apart during the attempt.
A little slow to respond
One of the downsides of the visual style is that there is a slight delay between the user pressing a button and the character responding to it. Most of the time this isn't a problem, but when you're dealing with timed puzzles it can throw you off.
Some elements aren't very intuitive
At first, there are a lot of notes pinned to the world to help familiarize you with how the game works. Later on, you'll need to figure out how new elements work on your own, and a few of these (the bamboo shoots in particular) are not that easy to understand. Though, part of the difficulty in figuring out how things work might be due to the next problem rather than poor design choices.
It's not always clear when you can fall safely
Your character can't fall very far without ripping apart. More specifically, it's the speed of the fall that will rip him into pieces. The problem is, it's often impossible to judge if he'll reach that speed if he was to jump from a given position. In other words, how far you can fall seems arbitrary from jump to jump. Supposedly landing on a slope increases the likelihood of surviving, but this too seems to be arbitrary.
Broken on Windows 10
If you try to run this game on Windows 10, all you'll get is a black screen and the title music. Nothing responds to your mouse or keyboard, and even shortcuts like CTRL+ALT+DEL don't work. You're forced to do a hard shutdown in order to continue using your computer.

Concerns and Issues

Your character gets torn apart a lot
Being made of paper, he's extremely fragile and easily rips when injured. Whenever he tears, his body will fly into various pieces before reforming at the last checkpoint. There's nothing really graphic here (as a paper person lacks blood or internal organs) but it's sometimes jarring to see his parts fly about.
Some other mild violence is present
Occasionally you'll need to deal with other creatures in the world to progress. This amounts to hitting a monkey with a rock it threw at you, tricking a "demon hamster" into ramming stone walls, and sending bats after lizards that were just minding their own business.