REVIEW: Magnet Man

Not to be confused with the Mega Man 3 boss by the same name, Magnet Man ($1.00) is yet another game by developer Chris Antoni1, a simple platformer using the power of magnets to fuel its type of predictable (yet occasionally smart) puzzle-solving. The idea isn’t exactly novel on its own— magnetized platformers being rather common— but when done right (on XBLIG, the excellent Magnetic By Nature comes to mind), it can attract2 an audience.

Magnet Man - Screen

Like MbN before it, this one’s similarly a platformer, albeit one starring a shirtless gladiator(?). I think. And yes, he has a magnet surgically-implanted on his arm, which he (of course!) uses to attach to and repel from the changing polarity of magnets that he can control (via switches). Or maybe he’s just carrying a magnet. It’s hard to tell, and doesn’t really have any effect on the game at all. There is no story or text of any kind, no motivation or impetus, just the ‘Job well done, sir!’ of setting a high score.

Save for the later levels, where some tiny penguin-like enemies show up (one hit equals death, so you simply avoid them), it’s just you and the magnet cannon. And a bunch of same-y looking stage designs between you and each exit. Your cannon is versatile, allowing you to attach yourself to ceilings or pull yourself straight across the length of the level, provided you are ‘lined up’ with said magnets, and on level ground. While that’s not exactly a twist on the formula, Magnet Man‘s insistence on those conditions does create some clever traversal puzzles and the occasional ‘how do I get there?’ moments.

Magnet Man - Screen2

This generally requires you to swap polarities, time your moves to disappearing bricks, or push a ‘boulder’ (sort of looks like a Transformers‘ head) with your cannon in order to create stairs or safe havens from spike pits. Expect to make a few mistakes, but the level of difficulty’ rests more on your patience than actual challenge; you have a limited amount of lives, but given that you can save at each new level, you’re never in any danger of losing your place.

That said, starting from the title and all the way to the graphics, Magnet Man is not very interesting. The gameplay is decent, but it’s all visually and tonally bland, lacks any sort of personality (sorry, Magnet Gladiator), and feels rough around the edges. With a little more time in the developmental oven it might fare better, but with far better (and far more inviting) magnetic platformers out there, there’s no real reason to invest your time here.

  1. I should really just change the name of this site to ‘theANTONI’, seeing as how I’ve been strictly reviewing games by him. It seems that way, certainly. 
  2. Only bad ‘magnet’ pun I’ll do, I swear. And I stick to my promises…. okay, fine. Just those two. 

22 thoughts on “REVIEW: Magnet Man”

    1. Hey, but I stayed on topic. Authorised or not, the video does include a magnet. 🙂 Can’t really say that about the part with the Bluetooth cock, though.

  1. Tried the game, fun to play.
    Bur as you said , Chris needs to work a little bit more on his games.
    Some gameplay features i would like:
    -being able to use the magnet while falling.
    -being able to fall faster (waaaaaay too slow…. Maybe by pressing down on the d pad?)

    1. Agreed. I think the games would be better if they had more polish / personality to them. XBLIG isn’t exactly the most profitable place for that, but ultimately, more polish = more fun.

      I thought that not being able to use the magnet cannon while jumping or falling was a bad idea at first, but it actually makes the puzzles better, and makes you take a second look or give it some more thought. It does slow the pace of the game down, but I guess that’s a trade-off you have to make.

    2. Well the level editor is great, but without the ability to test others levels, it is useless, in my opinion.

    1. Because we constantly need new stuff to preoccupy ourselves with, just to forget about it two weeks later and move onto new-er stuff! Also, it’s November; time for the big AAA push for the holiday season. I’m tapped out already, and still have Assassin’s Creed and GTA V (finally going to play it) to pick up. Then there’s the early 2015 roster, which is looking very promising. It’s a never-ending cycle of things-to-play-and-not-enough-time-to-play-it, and we are all guilty. 🙂

    2. Oh WOW…I got a thumbs down. I think that is the first time I’ve seen on thumbs down on any of the comments on your site. Well….Tim…where is my achievement for the thumbs down?

    3. Actually, I believe there was another incident where you got a thumbs down. I can’t remember when / where, but it was odd to see, given that your comment didn’t have any objectionable stuff. Perhaps you have a hidden ‘enemy’ somewhere among the ranks here. …. ❓ …. 👿 … ❗ Either way, Achievement Unlocked!


      Unpopular Opinion – 20G1

      1. Achievement description: Get a downvote on something you said. Hey, not everyone can be universally-loved. 
    1. Funny, but true, about that joke. 🙂

      As always, you are welcome. Glad to put my ‘two cents’ out there, even if it’s not always the money you want talking. 😀

    1. I’m just kidding, really. I actually dig the puns, they are very punny. (sorry, I couldn’t resist)

  2. The laws of attraction may not apply to me, but if you feel like Magnet Man is something you can get stuck on, I’ve got two codes, courtesy of the always-accommodating Chris Antoni. Simply reply to this comment, and the code is yours!

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