The game title. mr run and jump can be seen running toward some deadly hazards including a floating skull

Mr. Run and Jump Review

Game: Mr. Run and Jump
Genre: Action, Arcade, Platformer
System: Nintendo Switch (Also on Steam (Windows), Xbox, Atari VCS and PS4)
Developer|Publisher: Graphite Lab | Atari
Age Rating: EU 3+ | US Everyone
Price:  US $24.99 | UK £22.49 | EU € 24,99
Release Date: July 25th, 2023

Review code provided with many thanks to Uber Strategist PR

Beware the Void

Mr Run and Jump is a precision 2D platformer that is easy to pick up with its tight and responsive controls but very tough to master. The game was originally an Atari 2600 release back in 2021, Atari were so impressed with the game that they teamed with the developers to create a version released to modern systems. The game very much retains its retro design and challenge. However, it’s a choice that might not work for everyone.

Mr Run and Jump rolling
Just roll with it

The game begins with your main character, (Mr or Ms) Run and Jump, navigating through a simple level that has the aesthetics of an Atari 2600 game. Simple pixel blocky sprites that just tickle the retro nostalgia. It may be a primitive look but I was instantly taken with the game thanks to its satisfying and responsive controls.

The retro look soon comes to an end and you enter a void into a neon world with a more modern look, featuring sprites with much more fluid designs. It’s a lot more bright and glowy, I felt I needed sunspecs to play this (the bloom can be adjusted). In this new universe a small plot develops. Here you need to travel across various coloured realms with your pixelated dog collecting crystals and keeping the destructive void at bay. Throughout the adventure you’re a guided by a glowy eye ball who provides useful advice from controls and techniques. Making sure you get  the most out of the skills available when platforming.

The eyeball will also use the opportunity to deliver some wit about the realm you’re exploring. It’s even self aware it’s a eyeball with no legs. It’s all very take it or leave it but there is some charm to the effort made here. If you are here just to test your platforming skills you will not be disappointed. 

A crack in the game screen, the game looks retro like a atari 2600 game
Don’t throw your joy con at the screen in rage

Run and Jump

The goal of each level is to make it to the end in one single pixelated piece. You are unable to attack enemies. You can only make the most of the platforming moves and your skills to run and jump through the levels. The game really does advertise its main feature on the cover. You have many platforming moves available, all of which are available when you start the game. No need to unlock a new move and return later. Although, you may be replaying levels but for different reasons which we’ll come onto later.

Of course, there’s the simple run and jump. But you are also able to roll, wall jump, double jump and perform a dive to project further forward. All these moves have a unique momentum and speed to them that’s comfortable to control.

As mentioned the controls are tight and responsive, ideal for a precision platformer like this. All of these moves can be combined together to traverse round the levels and it’s very satisfying when doing this. Going from a roll to a double jump, to diving through some spikes, made me feel like a platforming master for a short period of time at least.

As well as making it to the end of the level in one piece, there are several blue crystals to collect and three hidden challenge levels, where you can collect one of three hidden orbs. Collecting all these goodies will unlock additional levels at the end of the game.

After a few levels of platforming the realm will conclude with a more tense encounter. In these levels the void is moving fast across the screen and you need to race away from it. If you get hit once, you die instantly and will warp pack to the beginning of the area in the level, losing any collectibles you gathered up to this point. Be aware this is not an easy game.     

A eyeball talking to mr run and jump sayin 'well I wouldn't know. I'm a eye, not a nose'
If the eye of Sauron was funny


For the first realm I was thoroughly enjoying myself. The level design and hazard placement felt just right where I felt challenged but satisfied. Things took a pretty steep turn on the second realm and didn’t let up from there. Hazards ramped up requiring mastery of the game’s controls. The game sets itself up to be this experience where you die quick but just keep retrying till you make it. I found this fine in the first realm but the frustration quickly dug in after that.

To appeal to those struggling a few assistance features can be added. More checkpoints can be placed on the level and if you really struggle, an invincibility star will appear making you invulnerable to hazards. But if you use this, you can’t collect the game’s collectibles. I didn’t mind more checkpoints, in fact I welcomed it but the game doesn’t let you just switch this on or decide where to use it. The game only decides for you after several deaths. The invincibility star just felt pointless as it doesn’t encourage the player to improve their skills. Maybe adding hit points would have been better.

Personally I would have preferred it if the game just gradually increased the difficulty over time, rather than make it so sudden into the game. I appreciate the effort to cater to a more casual crowd. However, it still feels like it will receive more love from those willing to take on the tough challenge and go through a lot of trial and error. If you can manage that and don’t mind a lot of repetition, this game will keep you busy for a long time to come.

A scrren crawling with hazards including frogs and spikes
The difficulty quickly ramps up

Conclusion: A Solid Platforming Challenge

Mr Run and Jump scores a deserved recommendation thanks to its excellent and simple fun to the point gameplay. But I don’t recommend this for everyone. If you have been put off by precision platformers before, this game will not win you over. This appeals to the dedicated platform fans, streamers and of course speedrunners.

It’s a good Switch port that runs well in TV and handheld mode. If you’re looking for a challenge that really tests your platforming skills then Mr Run and Jump is well worth running or jumping onto the eshop to find. 

Final Verdict: I Like it 

I like it

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