Of the seven spunkillion (by my own estimate) games shown off at this morning’s Guerilla Collective 3.0 showcase, there was one little game that stood out to me above all the others. That game was Ugly, a side-scrolling platformer with a hand-drawn visual style and some devious-looking puzzles.

There are several mechanics shown off in the trailer, from the very basic discovery of a key to the screen-splitting ability that allows the protagonist to create a double of himself to reach places he otherwise couldn’t. And then there are scribbles all over, which seem to be projecting traumatic childhood memories.

Gameplay-wise, this brings me back to the classic puzzle-platformer Braid, while visually it reminds me of The Binding of Isaac, with a theme of childhood trauma solidifying the Isaac reference.

Here’s a short list of features, taken directly from the game’s official website:

  • New Mechanics. It is unique, starting from its mechanics which consist in the invocation of your own reflection. It has a crazy variety of logic and skilled strategies that will challenge you to solve puzzles, defeat bosses and unlock all the secrets.
  • Deep Narrative. Ugly is a psycho-dark fairy tale about a nobleman, a mirror, puzzles and huge bosses. It is all about the process of discovering yourself and your traumas through the mirror, which never stops reminding you how ugly you are.
  • Hand Crafted. The backgrounds are fully detailed, made with the patience of traditional animation making. It has a quirky and dark atmosphere. You will cry a bit but don’t worry, it doesn’t get too tragic as we are ironical cartoonists.

Ugly is due out in 2023 on Steam, and it’s unclear whether or not this will come to consoles as well. I guess we’ll have to wait until next year to find out.

In the meantime, you can wishlist the game on Steam right now, and be sure to check out the amazing reveal trailer for Ugly below.

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