OH MY GLOB!
Ever since the sad demise of perpetual cat sim Mewgenics we've been eagerly awaiting the Edmund McMillen's next title with bated breath. Will it be a platformer, puzzler, or some weird semi demented homebrew affair? Who knows! But given McMillan's playfully perverse creativity it'll be something original, something special. So you can imagine my surprise when I first saw footage of The End Is Nigh, and saw what appeared to be a mashup of Super Meat Boy and Gish.
You play as Ash, a jumpy, lumpy ball of NOT-TAR who lives in a post apocalyptic world and likes to collect tumors (yep this is a McMillen game alright). Similar to Super Meat Boy there's a great emphasis placed on movement and air-control, and just like in GISH you can stick to surfaces for as long as you like. But this is where the similarities end, where as Super Meat Boy was the simplest of gameplay refined to a rapier point TEIN has a fair bit more going on. Each 'level' is contained in a single screen and emphasizes a single mechanic or skill, the levels branch in a semi-linear fashion giving you a little bit of exploration and variance. TEIN is closer to VVVVVV than Spelunky or Metroid and in much the same way slowly and simply introduces new mechanics letting the game ramp up the difficulty without overwhelming player.
It's strange, while I wouldn't say TEIN is easier then Super Meat Boy it's deffinatley more beginner friendly, (well there's less dents in my wall at least) a perfect little time waster, and proof that McMillen and Glaiel are still on point.
You can get The End Is Nigh over at the usual joint