TowerClimb is at its core a platforming game for the PC. Your goal is to climb to the top of a stage, enter a door, and move on to the next stage of ascent. Sound simple? Just don’t mind the angry hounds or human-mongering wurms, they only hurt a bit! Death comes easy in this hellscape, luckily you can always re-up on extra lives during your ascent. However, once you fail, you are doomed to start from the beginning once again.
Once you get the controls mastered, which are admittedly unwieldy at first, it quickly turns into a game of strategic maneuvering and resource management. At the start of each round you are given a stash of potions for emergency usage. You are able to hold 6 items in your inventory, and one in your hands at any given time. The items available range from simple crates to one-off super attacks. If you are in desperate need of a jump boost, you can always throw an item downwards mid-jump for a little extra height.
One element that TowerClimb handled extraordinarily well is its feeling of a new layout upon each new climb. The randomization of the stages themselves are without error. I had originally thought that a similar approach to that of Spelunky was used (building segments, then combining), after asking one of the developers it turns out it was done entirely through an algorithm. This is quite the feat. There are also threats that may appear during any given stage: the human-mongering wurm is one of many. These types of stage-altering threats really change how you may decide to approach your climb. Often times, it leaves you rushing and leaving behind much needed items. Lastly, there are quests that may be available on certain stages. These allow you to complete a rather difficult task for a powerful reward.
The environment gives off a vibe of hidden darkness and danger poised to consume your soul at the earliest given opportunity. The only word suitable for describing this art would be astounding. The main character is left without any defining attributes. I feel this suits the idea that you are not a hero; you are not powerful, you are a weak nobody who just happens to have enough courage to climb a death-powered tower of evil.
TowerClimb is one of the hardest games I have ever played, and I think most will tend to agree. This is up there with beating Binding of Isaac: Rebirth with The Lost. For the real hardcore players, if you manage to get through the base game there is a second tower that is even more threatening and ludicrous by nature.
This game has so many secrets, tricks, and unexpected elements that it is hard to not rant and rave about them. With any game that can claim this, it is best you find them yourself.
Players, keep your eyes open and your brain sharp. You’re in for a hell of a climb! (Did I mention human-mongering wurms? They’re frightening!)
TowerClimb was in development for 5 years, created by Davioware and Quazi. TowerClimb is available on Steam for $14.99: http://store.steampowered.com/app/396640/.