FEZ Pocket Edition ($4.99) by Polytron is the official mobile port of the popular indie game that debuted in 2012 on Xbox Live Arcade. Due to the popularity of this indie darling, it expanded to other platforms after a yearlong exclusivity agreement. This is the game that primarily inspired other popular titles, such as Monument Valley.
If you've been paying attention to the gaming scene in the past few years, then you'll know that the Escheresque-style (inspired by M.C. Escher) puzzle platformer games have been on the rise. It really started to get popular with Monument Valley, but that had to get its inspiration from somewhere too, right? Well it did, and that was FEZ. This is the puzzle platformer game that started all of the shifting perspective styles that we see in other games, and it's finally available on mobile, after much anticipation. I bought FEZ a while back on Steam, but nothing beats having your favorite games in the palm of your hand while you're out-and-about.
App Feels Like
App Feels Like
Visually, FEZ Pocket Edition retains the same classic art style as the original game. This means blocky, voxel-style graphics (think similarly to Minecraft) and pixel art mixed together in one. That's because the game starts off with just 2D graphics, but then the story unfolds and things move into a 3D perspective. The character sprites themselves are always in pixelated, 2D form, which is fun to watch as things shift between 2D and 3D. The color palette in FEZ is bold and vibrant, but there are times at night when it's darker and more eerie. Animations are buttery smooth and fluid on my iPhone 8 Plus, so I experienced no issues with frame rate lag or choppiness.
Another thing about FEZ that is well done is the music and sound. The game contains a soothing, ambient and atmospheric soundtrack that immerses you into the game world. I recommend grabbing your favorite pair of headphones and sitting back with this game, because you'll lose a few hours with it. The sound effects are also nice, as they're rather quirky and charming. Overall, FEZ Pocket Edition retains the great visual and audio design from the original game.
In FEZ, players will find themselves taking the role of Gomez as he tries to live day-to-day life at home. However, he must embark on an adventure and soon gets a cute little fez, which grants him the power to see beyond the normal world, and even other dimensions that were hidden in plain sight. You'll eventually get a Navi-like cube guardian who helps you in Gomez's journey, providing you with tips and guidance on what you must do. However, it's pretty straightforward: find cube shards scattered in each area and gather them all to restore order to the universe.
Controls in FEZ Pocket Edition are simple and optimized for touch screens. In the bottom left corner is an on-screen D-pad with four directional buttons for going left, right, up, and down. The bottom right area of the screen has buttons for interacting with objects and doors, jump, and talk. It's pretty elementary stuff, and works well for the most part.
Once you get past the part in the story where you can shift perspective from 2D to 3D, then all you have to do is drag horizontally on the screen. This lets you move the camera around, and lets you see parts of the area that you wouldn't have thought about before. Shifting the perspective opens up many new paths that you can take to reach places you wouldn't have been able to before, and it's good to experiment and see what you can find. FEZ has secrets and hidden treasures as well, so it's important to explore every nook and cranny.
The only thing I didn't like about the controls is that sometimes it gets a bit tricky to make the jumps that are further out. I had a few moments where I thought I tapped on the right buttons but I end up falling short, because the buttons felt unresponsive. Fortunately, there's no penalty to dying in FEZ, and you get infinite lives, so it's not a big deal if you mess up. Just be warned, though, that it does take a bit of practice and timing to get some jumps right in FEZ Pocket Edition.
While I'm still pretty early on in the game, I am loving it so far. I have the game on my Mac through Steam, but I find having it available wherever I go much more enjoyable. The game is also beautiful, and the ever-changing perspective lets you see things that weren't always there. It helps hone your observational skills. It's a fantastic puzzle platformer game with a ton of things to discover, so if you've never played FEZ before, then there's no better time than now to start.
Fez has been ported to iOS to deliver classic 2D platforming with a 3D twist.
FEZ Pocket Edition brings the lovable FEZ to our mobile devices. Even though the game is several years old, it's still as delightful and charming as ever. The graphics have a unique style, especially as you shift the perspective around constantly. The music and sound is incredibly done, as it fully immerses and captivates you as you play. The controls work out well for what it's worth, and the amount of secrets to uncover in FEZ mean this is one title you'll want to keep coming back to.
There's a lot to love about FEZ Pocket Edition, but it's not perfect. If you've played the game before, then there isn't much new content in the Pocket Edition to warrant another purchase. And again, the controls could be better optimized for jumping and reaching hard-to-reach spots, in my opinion. But hey, there's no penalty for dying, so it's not that big of a deal.
FEZ Pocket Edition is a worthy addition to anyone's mobile game collection. The game's unique visual style is captivating and lovable, and the music is relaxing. For a multi-platform game that was ported over, the touch screen controls work well enough for most, and it's a pleasant experience overall. There are many secrets to find in FEZ, so there's always a reason to go back to previous worlds and find things you missed. Overall, FEZ Pocket Edition is well worth the money.