This title is exclusive to PC and was reviewed as such.
I’ve been playing Platformers my entire life. Hell, my first console was a Mega Drive and that’s pretty much all we had to play back then. I don’t remember ever calling them by the genre’s name, though. Despite my busy schedule, and against both the wishes of my partner, and my own inner voice, when an interesting platformer comes across my plate I like to have first dibs. Enter –KLAUS-, developed by La Cosa and described as “...a precision-based puzzle 2D platformer with a self-aware narrative. It’s tight & challenging platforming takes inspiration from precise classics games combined with a tense and emotionally engaging story.” The description won me over and I knew I had to be the one to play it.
Check out the trailer below, because that’s what really sold me:
The heart and soul of any platformer is of course in the platforming. If a title wants to stand out in what is a heavily saturated genre, it has to bring something new. Each game goes for its own twist, and -KLAUS-’ is what will keep you coming back for more. With two characters to control you solve different puzzles, each one relying on one character, or both characters’ strengths, combined with some very tight and accurate platforming make it an absolute joy to play.
There are hidden levels that provide more insight into the game, and the story. Not only do they provide additional depth to an already interesting story, they also provide even more unique ways of playing, from mirrored worlds, to shrinking, and enlarging.
Once you’ve beaten the 6 worlds, 34 levels, 100+ rooms, and 3 Bosses you’ll unlock the Speedrun mode, which if the game wasn’t already difficult enough, only makes things harder.
Like the platforming, the story is what helps -KLAUS- stand out, and stand out it does. The entire game is filled with witty, hilarious, and sometimes sombre 4th wall breaking commentary. I would have kept playing for the gameplay alone, but it’s really the story that kept me interested and kept me persevering through the many deaths (I’m talking way too many, it’s embarrassing thinking back on it).
The aforementioned bonus levels and the secret missions bring even more story to the game, and are a must for anyone wanting to get a full understanding of the game as it unravels.
Visuals and Audio
The stunning visuals combined with the visceral audio transport you into the game in a way not often seen in platformers. On the audio front everything feels perfectly placed, and the occasional grunts and noises from the main characters only amplify this. Visuals are much the same, the high contrast and popping art really makes the important elements stand out.
I loved the game, and I’m going to continue to play it. I’ll hopefully get better at speedrunning, but more importantly I don’t see myself getting tired of the game. It’s fun, fast, and fresh,and it’s absolutely stunning. Some people may struggle with certain parts that can seem unfairly difficult. But it’s a platformer; if you can’t handle that – then maybe switch genres. The controls are tight, and so are the actions required, so if it’s where you need to go then trust me, it’s possible.