Human: Fall Flat by No Brakes Games is a solid addition to the whole gamut of wacky puzzlers that have defined the Nintendo Switch library. With its curious title and wonky control scheme, physical comedy is inevitable, especially as you try to wade your way through bizarre dreamscapes and fiddle with obscure-looking puzzles. Human Fall Flat gets and appreciates the fun of pudgy ragdoll physics, and provides a humorous little breather from the monotony of more traditional first-party titles.
Human: Fall Flat has you control Bob, a white mass of clay that roughly resembles a human. The objective is to navigate open environments and arrive at each of their exits through any means necessary, which sounds simple in theory, but thanks to the goofy controls and physics, is a rollercoaster ride of awkward blunders. Bob is literally a bumbling idiot: his gait is constantly wobbly, his jumping is clumsy, and his limbs flail around like spaghetti. Even opening a door sometimes is nearly impossible due to Bob’s narrow moveset. As the introductory level will teach you, pressing the left and right shoulder buttons will have Bob lift his arms to grab onto a variety of surfaces and pick up items. His hands will be glued onto anything they come into contact with, so you’ll need to aim your wild flailing carefully towards whatever your target is. The challenge comes from trying to comprehend the control scheme of the character so that you can use it to your advantage to navigate a level as efficiently as possible.
The progression in difficulty always felt natural, although I rarely found myself truly stumped by a certain level. Consistently, there are a variety of methods to solve a puzzle, which encourages creativity and license to explore the physics playgrounds that make up the worlds depicted. Later levels introduce different obstacles such as vehicles and electric circuitry to spice things up. I would estimate an average playthrough to take 6 to 7 hours, and with the help of the level select screen, replaying previous levels to try different tactics is made quite simple. Visually, the environments are portrayed in a minimalist manner, with the occasional bright green fields and red doors to remind the player of their objectives. The bleak classical music accompanies the visual aesthetic well and sets a grim tone even in the most absurd of circumstances. While the overall presentation of the game is nothing really to write home about, it does its job just fine and isn’t actively distracting.
Human: Fall Flat is best enjoyed however, as with most puzzlers, in co-op mode, as bringing a friend on board with their own Bob is a recipe for frenzy of the most fun kind. Devising and carrying out solutions together with a partner makes certain levels that much more manageable and enjoyable. For example, larger items become easier to hold, or in another case, one person can operate a piece of machinery to allow the other to advance to another area. Even just being able to plain horse around with two ragdolls gives the game that extra flavor. Unfortunately only split-screen with 2 players max is available, with the online multiplayer element being omitted, which feels like a missed opportunity to increase the chaos wherever you take your console. But if you ever start to find yourself getting jaded with the single-player mode, co-op mode is definitely a breath of fresh air that is highly recommended.
Human: Fall Flat is a wonderfully eccentric puzzler that takes advantage of the technical capabilities of the Nintendo Switch to create an intricately imaginative physics sandbox. The game is awash with delightful character physics and a diverse range of puzzles to keep you howling all night. Some of the mechanics may feel a little too nutty and playing solo may get tiresome quickly, but co-op mode remedies all that by having you revel in the chaos with a fellow friend. Falling on my face has never been this fun.
Watch the Human: Fall Flat Gameplay Trailer:
You can get Human: Fall Flat for Nintendo Switch and PC via Steam.