Splodey review

by on June 4, 2024
Reviewed On
Also Tested On
Release Date

June 4, 2024


Splodey is a deceptively simple game. Although billed as “a platformer without a jump button”, it kind of does have one – but that’s all it has. And you don’t really jump, I guess; in fact you propel yourself into the air with exploding potions.

So it’s a physics puzzler really, one in which the objective is to catapult your little hooded alchemist around levels, avoiding hazards, activating teleporters, and using a limited number of tools to make it through bite-sized stages. To call it one note sounds a bit derogatory, but it genuinely is. There’s only one mechanic throughout, although there are a few items you’ll unlock later that aid your traversal, such as a parachute.

Splodey review

But while Splodey looks pretty straightforward and the brief certainly makes it sound simple, it’s actually incredibly tough. You can only angle Splodey’s (I don’t actually know if that’s the character’s name, but we’re going with it) trajectory, choosing their direction but not their velocity. Exploding while running will launch you further, and holding the direction will cause you to hit the ground running, which is sometimes necessary to avoid hazards.

There are spikes and traps, as well as things like pits of lava and death drops, and when you hit one you die instantly. You can also opt to restart a level, which is essential if you mess something up. Some levels require you to launch potions up and over obstacles or across chasms to clear blocks or create platforms, and a misaligned throw can scupper your plans.

Splodey review

Likewise, you’ll often need to angle Splodey into teleporters and continue their trajectory on the other side, which requires a level of patience I had to dig pretty deep for on more than one occasion. In fact, it’s fair to say that while Splodey is well-made, with simple graphics and a solid implementation of its single, core mechanic, it’s also incredibly, teeth-shatteringly frustrating at times.

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Some of the levels are longer than others, requiring you to navigate veritable gauntlets of traps, spikes, and teleporters, collecting little blue diamonds or such to open the exit door. Making it through two-thirds of a level before cocking it up with one simple mistake and having to do it all again is maddening, especially when some of the levels are built on trial and error and you won’t know what’s coming until you impale your face on it.

Splodey review

It really begins to mix up the difficulty later, too, with upside down levels, and updrafts that let Splodey float across them. But little is more irritating than simply trying to make your way up a chimney-shaped area, and attempting to “bounce” Splodey off the opposite walls. Thumbing the other stick will cause him to change direction in mid-air, and not getting the angle millimetre-perfect will often launch you in the wrong direction. Also, although you can hurl bombs like a machine gun if you’re on the ground, Splodey seems to run out of puff quickly when you’re trying to climb walls with the damn things.

But this is a game for those who crave a simple, repeatable challenge, with a global leaderboard to track your completion speeds for each level. There are few rewards for achieving greatness beyond bragging rights, but if you’re obsessed with nailing the top speed in every stage of any game, you’ll have fun here. Sadly, though, that really is all there is to Splodey. It’s a fun, novel little title that seems custom built for the Steam Deck, and definitely has the potential to be addictive when you get on a winning streak.


Simple, responsive controls
Novel concept


Can be frustrating
A little one-note

Editor Rating
Our Score


In Short

Splodey is a fun, novel little title that definitely has the potential to be addictive when you get on a winning streak.