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Mr. Shifty Review: 1000 Fists

/ Apr 18th, 2017 No Comments

Mr. Shifty

Mr. Shifty is a top-down shooter that is not unlike Hotline Miami or other games in the genre. However, there is something about Mr. Shifty that is unique, and that is the ability to teleport.

Players will punch and teleport their way through multiple floors of an evil corporate building, but the punching and teleporting is more important than the plot.

Shifting Up

An evil a-hole is up to no good, and only Mr. Shifty can take him down. That’s essentially the entire plot of Mr. Shifty. There’s no doubt that developers turned their focus to gameplay over the game’s plot. However, the dialogue that exists is pithy and humorous.

Mr. Shifty

Time to kill this James Bond villain lookalike with extreme prejudice.

While Mr. Shifty is a silent protagonist, the dialogue Nyx dishes at him is entertaining and informative. Nyx serves as his handler and, aside from some communications with evil baddie Chairman Stone, she is the only NPC interaction that doesn’t involve killing.

The game doesn’t take itself seriously. The plot is light and there is some breaking of the fourth wall, but it ultimately feels unnecessary and leaves players wanting more.

Teleportation Punch

Mr. Shifty’s unique gameplay experience is the main draw of the game. During fast-paced combat, a single false step means certain death, and this creates a trial-and-error method of combat that is smooth and rewarding.

Objects around the room can be picked up and thrown to take down enemies, but Mr. Shifty’s bread and butter is the teleport-punch combo. With the press of a button, players can teleport the main character, which is really what sets Mr. Shifty apart from other top-down shooters. Combining this teleportation ability with punching results in blissful combinations and artful takedowns.

Mr. Shifty

Knowing when to throw a dude out a window is key.

Enemies come hot and fast in Mr. Shifty, so it is important to time teleportation combos well. The AI is smart enough to anticipate players’ moves, so you must make sure that you aren’t using a recognizable pattern to fight opponents. For instance, enemies will be detect if players are constantly teleporting in straight lines.

In addition, teleporting is not infinite. If you use up all of your teleportation meter, you will need to wait for a “cool down” period before you can use it again.

Death will happen in Mr. Shifty, and it will happen a lot. But that doesn’t mean there’s a recognizable pattern you must learn to clear each room. Instead, you need to learn tactics and how to best counter specific enemy types. Enemies without guns can be approached head on, but opponents who carry guns require well-timed teleportation moves.

There’s a lot to love in mastering Mr. Shifty’s challenging gameplay, and once levels are completed, they can be replayed to try for better completion times and fewer deaths.

Inside The Rave

Mr. Shifty’s minimalistic 3D graphics are simple, yet very well designed. Areas are sparse and monotone, but unique objects and areas offer enough detail. The main character and NPCs don’t feature complex character design, but it works with the game’s tone.

Like with the story, the game leaves players wanting a little more from the visuals. Despite that, the carnage that takes place during each fight is incredibly visceral.

Mr. Shifty

It’s a bit sparse, but it gets the point across.

Mr. Shifty’s fast-paced, biting score nails the game’s tone and setting. Each level offers quick scores that you might here at a rave. Coupled with great sound effects that add weight to each hit, the audio really gets your adrenaline pumping.


Mr. Shifty is fast-paced and challenging. Its intense level design and soundtrack will have your heart pumping. Parts of the game, including the story, will leave you wanting more, but that is because the bits of it you get are solid and entertaining.

Currently, Mr. Shifty is available on PC and is a timed-console exclusive on Nintendo Switch. It is expected to release on additional consoles at a later date.

Mr. Shifty was reviewed on a Nintendo Switch using a code for the game provided by the publisher.


Greg Johnson

Greg Johnson

Associate Editor at Gaming Illustrated
Greg is a Nintendo fanboy who would cry if they ever went third party. He writes news, previews and reviews at Gaming Illustrated.
Greg Johnson

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Gaming Illustrated RATING



Mr. Shifty combines familiar gameplay elements to make a wholly unique experience.


The overall aesthetics are nice and the killings are visceral, but this top-down shooter isn't overly impressive.


This is one killer soundtrack, and it fits the game's tone perfectly.


The story is light and humorous, but it leaves players wanting more.