With its Game Boy-inspired visuals, whimsical music and minimalist gameplay, Pixboy had players wondering whether they’d jumped back in time when it debuted on PC and Nintendo Switch earlier this year. It’s a great little platformer if nostalgia is your thing.
The game’s simplicity makes it a great fit for mobile, and the good news is that it’s just made the leap to iOS and Android devices. Here are 10 reasons to download it on yours…
It’s loaded with retro charm
If you’re yearning for a simpler time when monochromatic visuals and chiptune music were all you needed to have a good time, Pixboy will scratch that retro itch. Oaky Games’ nostalgic jump-fest lets players immerse themselves in a world where every solitary pixel counts and basic reflex-based challenges are as complicated as things get.
Unlock new colour palettes
Pixboy may be monochromatic, but that isn’t to say there are no colours to bask in. By collecting in-game coins, you can unlock new 1-bit colour palettes, and many of them were inspired by retro gaming platforms, including the Game Boy and MS-DOS.
More than 150 secret rooms to uncover
Exploration enthusiasts who enjoy straying from the beaten path won’t be disappointed by Pixboy. You’ll feel like a monochrome Indiana Jones while seeking out the 150 secret rooms that are hidden throughout the game’s 40 levels. Often there’s nothing to signpost their locations, so players must be persistent, adventurous and fearless to uncover them.
Killing things is optional
If you prefer the pacifist approach, Pixboy will reward you for taking it. Each level is designed to include paths that involve no killing whatsoever, but they’re the most difficult routes to take. If you succeed, you’ll be rewarded with a special Pacifist Badge.
Four unique worlds to explore
Taking its cues from some of the best platforming franchises from yesteryear, Pixboy’s levels are divided into four themed worlds: forest, desert, snowland and cyberspace. There are 40 levels in total, each of them handcrafted and sporting unique visuals, enemies and mechanics, depending on which world they belong to. Expect to encounter new challenges as you progress, and don’t be surprised to see the difficulty cranked up along the way.
Boss battles to test your mettle
Epic boss battles have long been a platforming tradition, and Pixboy celebrates this with the inclusion terrifying end-of-level guardians. They lie in wait at the end of each world, and when you encounter them, the gameplay suddenly shifts from casual platforming. Players must take quick evasive action to swerve each boss’ onslaught and make use of the unique mechanics each world features to get the better of them.
Weird and wonderful creatures to befriend
Not everything you will encounter in Pixboy is out to kill you. Although there are 30 different enemy types scattered across its four worlds, you’ll also find friendly creatures who are eager to offer a helping hand. They’ll called Cubic Jellos, and they’re willing to take one for the team by letting you jump right into their bodies to boost your jumping abilities.
Easter eggs to hunt down
Secret rooms aren’t the only bonuses for players to hunt down in Pixboy. There are also Easter eggs to keep your eyes peeled for, including pooping dog enemies, hidden ‘Pixboy’ messages and secret passages that lead beyond the confines of the screen, just like in classic platformers such as Super Mario Bros and Commander Keen.
Speedrun challenges to face
Pixboy offers plenty of replay value as it gives players incentive to revisit each level to set new speedrunning records. There are speedrun badges to earn on each stage and unlocking them calls for a very different approach. This might mean letting a few coins go begging or springboarding off an enemy’s head to reach your goal faster.
Classic 2D platforming
This is a classic 2D platformer in every sense. All of the genre’s most celebrated tropes are in place in Pixboy, from collecting coins to stomping on enemies. This is an old-school platformer and everything about it will conjure nostalgia, not least the 1-bit colour palette and chiptune music. All of this comes together to make it a perfect ticket to the past.