Tiny Thor | Norse-themed retro platformer out in June

tiny thor

Tiny Thor, a platformer with stunning sprites by Xeno Crisis and Shantae pixel artist Henk Nieborg, is out on 5 June.


Tiny Thor, a 2D platformer from indie developer Asylum Square, is out on 5 June. Why should you care about this? Because it looks frankly gorgeous, thanks in no small part to the work of veteran pixel artist Henk Nieborg. You may know him for his relatively recent work on Bitmap Bureau’s top-down run-and-gun, Xeno Crisis, but Nieborg’s work stretches back to the 1990s and takes in such cult classics as The Misadventures of Flink, Contra 4 and Shantae 2: Risky’s Revenge.

Looking through Nieborg’s portfolio, we’ve also just discovered that there was a Vickie The Viking game made for the Nintendo DS in 2008. So, er, blimey. We’ll have a look for that on eBay later.

But we digress. Tiny Thor sees its youthful Norse hero roaming 30 levels, fighting enemies with his big magic hammer and solving the occasional puzzle. What’s striking is that, where most modern platformers look eastwards for their inspiration, Tiny Thor looks far more akin to the European fare we westerners were playing on our Amigas and Atari STs in the early 1990s – the sorts of games once released by the likes of Psygnosis and the Bitmap Brothers. For some reason, European developers always liked to create those gradient-tinted skies with parallax clouds.

At any rate, Tiny Thor looks lovely, and the titular hero’s magic hammer mechanic looks like a fun little gadget to play around with. You can send it pinging around the screen, murdering enemies that would be otherwise out of reach, smash up bits of destructible scenery, use it to swing from vines, and even spit out multiple energy bolts, bullet-hell style.

The trailer below provides a handy illustration of what the Mjolnir can do:

Tiny Thor is scheduled to make its PC debut via Steam, GOG and the Epic Games Store on 5 June. Here’s hoping it hammers out a niche among this summer’s bigger releases.

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