Your heart starts racing, as you sit there with your iOS device in hand, ready to take on the fierce onslaught of walls closing in on you. With only your quick wit and reflexes, you dance between the gaps placed between the walls as the square buzz of chiptune surges through your ears. It’s just you versus the ever-shifting environment, there is nothing else. Super Hexagon is simple, but with it comes a flavorful experience that fits so well in the palm of your hands.
In Super Hexagon, you are but a small little triangle that is confined to the perimeter of the hexagon shape in the center. You hold the left or right side of the touchscreen to move counter-clockwise or clockwise and avoid being crushed by the walls. But things do not start off slow. In fact, things get difficult right from the get go, there is no forgiveness or mercy when it comes to Super Hexagon. One bad move and you’re done.
As you start up the game, you are given three difficulty levels: Hexagon, Hexagoner, Hexagonest. Perhaps to intimidate you, their respective difficulty designations are Hard, Harder, and Hardest. Each of these levels brings forth more complicated patterns than the last and each of them featuring their own music track. It starts off “slow” if you can consider it as such, the amount of bending and turning required increases significantly as you progress further and further. The goal here is time: Survive as long as you can without dying. Super Hexagon does its best to prevent you from surviving. This can include changing colors on you, spinning the camera around, merging or expanding sections on the fly, or even blocking certain lanes.
If you are able to last at least one minute (a feat that can take you awhile), you will unlock an alternative Hyper Mode for that difficulty level. This throws you right in the heat of the chaos. Personally, I have only unlocked Hyper Mode for Hexagon mode. But as I keep playing more and more Super Hexagon, I start to feel out the patterns, slowly learning how to handle the wrenches being thrown at me, and making progress as I catch my wind and go further.
Super Hexagon does strike a fine balance of being challenging and frustrating. In one hand, you will be dying a lot, in fact you can’t just live forever. You will be going into runs where you die within 15 seconds because you screwed up. It’s when you start feeling out the controls and being able to handle the randomness is when you’ll start blowing through, which then becomes a challenge of stamina. By no means does Super Hexagon try to dangle a fruit at the end for you to try to win, you are your own challenge and any wrong moves are all on you and only you.
Super Hexagon is one of those games that can easily disrupt your daily routine. You’ll start playing it, become so absorbed in it, and realize that you forgot to eat breakfast, lunch, and probably dinner. Super Hexagon is a hard game that feels your ego once you felt like you’ve accomplished what seemed to be impossible. One of the best experiences that can be had on a mobile device.