Release: December 6, 2017
Developer: Bennett Foddy
Publisher: Humble Bundle
I had heard about this game some time ago, but my editor and our esteemed site runner recently sent me a copy and insisted that I review it. Since I’m not one to let down my audience, I gave it a spin this afternoon. What the hell is Getting Over It with Bennett Foddy? Put simply, it is a fairly simplistic physics based indie game that tells the tale of a man stuck waist deep in a cauldron trying to propel himself over things with a rock climbing hammer. For the liberal arts majors out there, Getting Over It with Bennett Foddy is a deep allegory for man’s struggle against adversity. His struggle against the elements, against himself, and against a world that constantly tries to keep him from reaching his fullest potential.
Beyond moving the mouse to swing the hammer, players are not able to exert much direct control over the character. Gameplay is as simple as hooking the hammer onto something, swinging over, and then hoping for the best. Aiming the hammer at the ground, moving the mouse quickly in the direction the hammer is facing to “jump” and hoping for the best. Should you find yourself in free fall, you have no means to control the direction of the fall or anything of the sort and if there is nothing within reach to latch the hammer onto, you could very well find yourself falling all the way back to the ground. Failure doesn’t result in death, however. Rather in Getting Over It with Bennett Foddy, failure is greeted by some serene jazz piano music and a placid narration on the topic of failure, quotes from famous figures on the topic of failure and perseverance, insights into the game’s design philosophy, or what could loosely be called philosophical trash talk. Indeed, everything about Getting Over It with Bennett Foddy seems purposely designed to frustrate and potentially infuriate the player. In some ways, it is less a game than it is a frustration simulator.
There’s not really much more that can be said about Getting Over It. Ultimately, I found it a fun and sort of interesting challenge. It’s not one that I’m going to waste away hours and hours on, but it’s something that’s good for a spin every once in a while. Given that it’s available on mobile, I’m sure it will make a great toilet game for the smartphone crowd.