Released this week on Steam by Sand Sailor Studio, Black The Fall is a 2D side-scrolling puzzle platformer that shares many similarities with last year’s indie hit, Inside. Dark and moody atmosphere? Clever puzzles requiring plenty of trial and error? It’s got all that, plus a lil’ robot friend.

Comparisons between Black The Fall and Playdead’s dark and thoughtful platformer are unavoidable. The game takes place in a ruined world ravaged by communism. The player is a tired worker trying to escape years of toil under the regime. Though eventually opening up to the brighter outside world, the opening moments of the game take place within the gray walls and black shadows of a vast factory. Early in the game the player gains access to a laser pointer, a tool that manipulates mechanical devices as well as the brains of mind-controlled workers.

It’s all very dark and hopeless, until the player makes a new friend.

The introduction of this little robot pupper makes a dark game a bit brighter. The robodog can help the player climb to higher heights, activate electronic switches and can even act as a brace, as seen in the GIF atop this post.

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I streamed an hour and a half of Black The Fall earlier this week. Check out the stream archive below to see my escape attempt panned out.