This Could Hurt proves that a game does not need complicated controls to be fun and challenging.
This Could Hurt is a simple, one button game that features some of the more complicated and challenging puzzle solving I have seen on iOS. That almost sounds like an oxymoron. How can a game that uses only one button offer more complicated gameplay than games that require intense skill and finger dexterity.
The simple answer is level design. Skillfully designed levels in This Could Hurt offer the player an intense challenge that is based completely on timing. The one button in the game makes your character stop. Otherwise, he will keep traversing the 3D level on his own. You have to stop him at just the right time to avoid the various obstacles in the level.
You will be avoiding fire shooting out of the wall, spikes coming up from the ground, moving floors that cause you to fall into pits of death and so many more objects that are downright painful. As the name implies, hitting the objects throughout the level will hurt, and if enough of them hit you, you will no longer be counted among the living.
Just making it through the level is not sufficient. You will be rated on how well you perform on your excursion. Your performance will be assessed based on how fast you complete the level and how little damage you take. On the first few levels, you can blast through it without stopping and get the time medal, but once the levels get harder this tactic will no longer work, as you will die before you get to the end.
By the time you complete the first set of levels, you will realize that this game is freaking hard. Do not expect some cakewalk puzzle game, because there is none of that in This Could Hurt. It can be rage inducing at points, so much so that I had to exit the game and take a break every so often. That is not necessarily a knock against the game, because if you are looking for a challenge this game will be right up your alley.
There are plenty of powerups to help you get through the levels. You buy these using the acorns you collect as you progress through the game. In some parts, the powerups seem downright necessary. There were some sections that no matter how much I banged by head against them, I just could not get through without the powerups.
The game seems a little unbalanced at times. You cannot scroll around the level and look at what is coming up, which often leads to your death until you play the level a few times to get a feel what obstacles are present. The game also does not do a great job of teaching you how to play. I realize there is only one button to control the game, but knowing how to handle each obstacle beforehand would have been nice.
The art style in the game is beautiful, and it matches with the theme of the game very well. The levels look almost like they were designed in MineCraft, with everything seeming very block-like. The sound is decent, but nothing special. The traps throughout the level often make noise, and sometimes it can help let you know when they are coming, but honestly, I played without the sound a bit and did not miss it.
This is a great little game. I did not go into it expecting much, and I was thoroughly impressed with what they brought to the table. It is super challenging, yet still simple. If you are looking for a puzzle game that is both challenging and fun, check out This Could Hurt.
This could hurt is available now as a universal app. Get it on the App Store!