There you were, enjoying your favourite TV show and dancing along with your favourite jam. Then half of your house disappears and some froody dude claiming to be you tells you he needs your help. Before he gets any further, a giant alien crab grabs him, blood flying everywhere. You grab his futuristic gun and head off after the mangled cries for help.
Welcome to a crazy platformer about time-travel, humour aliens, alternate timelines and cake! What is a normal guy to do when facing pits of spikes and impossibly high jumps? Well, turns out your gun is so powerful you can use it as a jetpack of sorts, propelling yourself in the opposite direction. I say of sorts because it works more like the technology used for hovercrafts than a jetpack: the further you get from the ground, the less impact you have from firing your lazor cannon.
No Time To Explain is part-puzzle, part speedrunning platformer. Your first attempts at travelling around with your jetpack gun might feel awkward and slow, but as you get used to building up momentum and knowing when, where and for how long to shoot to get the wanted result, you will blitz through levels. Prepare yourself for a test of reflexes as some levels can only be completed by changing direction mid-jump, firing at a wall or roof of spikes to make your trajectory shallower. Boss fights can be similarly reflex-intensive, though I admit I found the proper way to fight one boss eventually and it stopped being one of the most frustrating bosses ever.
Prepare to die. A lot. Sometimes you will die because you misjudged a jump. Or you got your angle wrong for shooting to avoid hazards. Or you might fly off the stage completely while looking for cunning hidden hats. Luckily the game tends to checkpoint to every place that you safely stand on solid ground, meaning you get to try that jump straight away, without passing elements that you managed to successfully navigate already. Sometimes puzzles require you to be on fire to complete them, and if you don’t get to water in time, your death will send you back to the beginning of the level. This can get slightly annoying, but it does make getting that section right feel pretty rewarding. It also makes you stress out when you are on fire, like nature intended. PANIC!
No Time To Explain was tinyBuild’s first game and this remastered version adds controller support, 4-player multiplayer and an all-new soundtrack. If it sounds like something you are interested and you are now saying “Aww poo, I want this on console, you mean PC people getting all the cool stuff.” fear not, because it will be available on Xbox One. Get ready to save the world as you fight aliens, your evil alternate self, dinosaurs in the future, diabetes, a lesson in why games are art and much more as you blast your way into the future.
No Time To Explain is available today for $15 on Xbox One and Steam, with a 15% launch discount on Steam.