Xbox Game Pass regularly gets new games, but its catalogue of titles is now so large that it’s easy to miss or forget about games that have been on the service for a long time. If you’re like me, you’ll put games onto your ‘play later’ list, a digital pile of shame that you know full-well will see titles leave before you get the chance to sample them. That’s fine. It’s what Game Pass is: an ever-changing all-you-can eat buffet. You know the pizza is always going to be there, but the Moroccan spiced lamb might need to be gobbled up before it’s replaced.
One such game is Human Fall Flat from Curve Games and No Brakes Games. Thankfully it’s pizza in this contrived analogy, and it’s being served in more than one place – it's on Xbox Game Pass (console, PC, and cloud) as well as PS Plus Extra tier for PS4 and PS5. Hooray for subscription services!
Early moments with Human Fall Flat introduce the slightly unusual controls, which focus on the use of your featureless character’s arms to grapple with the game world – itself a rather bland environment, the kind of area you’d feel happy letting a toddler explore, crayons in slobber-soaked hand. Human Fall Flat is often labelled as “for kids,” and there’s no denying that it’s brilliant for younger players, but it’s fun for everyone if you give it a chance.
The aforementioned grapple controls see you able to independently control each arm, which when used together can lift your human-like shape up onto platforms. That’s the basic setup: climb things. What makes Human Fall Flat so much fun is the variety in the level designs (each its own mini open area to explore), which mix tricky, often wobbly platforming, with a bit of puzzle solving.
Dare I say it, but there’s a touch of Indiana Jones/Uncharted to some of the daring situations you find yourself in, with a friend co-op if you choose to play online (up to eight players) or split-screen. But, rather than sort of be carried along with the spectacle as in Sony’s tremendous action adventure, in Human Fall Flat you feel like you are in control. It’s a kind of seat of your pants, seconds away from touching cloth kind of thrill-ride that often ends in disaster, but feels incredible when you get it right.
Human Fall Flat is the perfect example of a game I only discovered through Game Pass (and others no doubt through PS Plus Extra). Looking for a game to play with my son, we gave it a whirl and it’s been a staple of our gaming time ever since. It helps that the devs have given plenty of free new content, which quite frankly feels too kind given the base game was already part of our subscription.
I know Human Fall Flat has sold well and reached a lot of players, but if you see it while scrolling through the list of games on either Xbox Game Pass or PS Plus, don’t dismiss it as a cutesy game for kids. It is, but it’s also so much more than that. It’s a jolly good time for all.