Metascore
77

Generally favorable reviews - based on 40 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 28 out of 40
  2. Negative: 0 out of 40
  1. Sep 24, 2016
    72
    Headlander could've been of the best games of the year if the combat were better and the environments more varied. Now it's just a good game.
  2. Feb 10, 2017
    70
    Headlander takes on an old setting with a new formula and does it just right. The Balance between combat and puzzle-solving is quite good but the story might leave you unsatisfied, while the gameplay also gets repetitive after a few hours.
  3. Jul 25, 2016
    70
    Quotation forthcoming.
  4. Jul 25, 2016
    70
    Thanks to its settings, its universe and some good gameplay ideas, Headlander succeeds in delivering a tasteful experience. Even if a bit redundant and not really irreproachable technically speaking, this Double Fine game surely can make your head spin.
  5. Jul 25, 2016
    70
    Headlander is entertaining, looks and sounds excellent, and gives off a cool vibe, but this isn't quite a classic.
  6. Jul 25, 2016
    70
    Hitting the right balance of puzzle and action with a proper dose of true `80s nostalgia, the majority of Headlander is a treat to play and to watch. That being said, its ending segment has a few head-scratching moments, including an uninspired “Simon says” memory game, and a final boss fight that is as frustrating as it is formulaic; the boss has three main segments of health and changes style after each segment is depleted, followed by a surprise re-birth into yet another form.
  7. 70
    Headlander is an okay game made much better by a suitably daft concept, and the way it’s presented. It’s an amusing take on the Metroidvania-style genre that adds little new mechanically.
  8. 65
    Headlander is a tease — a conglomerate of great ideas that tapered at the halfway point in favor of very basic “find the right color robot body” mechanics, lack of continued humor, and a middling story at best.
  9. Jul 25, 2016
    65
    Although I absolutely love the aesthetics and concept of Headlander, the non-combat gameplay is only fair, and it’s brought down further with too much combat detracting from the things it does well. I was interested enough to stick around and see how things turned out at the end, but there were definitely a few times when I walked away and took a break out of annoyance. Like so many other examples before it, Headlander is another could-have-been that just doesn’t play to its strengths.
  10. Sep 18, 2016
    60
    Double Fine offers a unique game with a retro futuristic 70's style and strong gameplay. This Metroidvania does miss new features and the story could be better.
  11. Jul 26, 2016
    60
    What starts as a fine homage to Super Metroid and ‘70s style sci-fi ends as a disappointing waste of both story and gameplay potential.
  12. Jul 25, 2016
    60
    Quotation forthcoming.
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These unscored reviews do not factor into the Metascore calculation.
  1. Jul 25, 2016
    Neither fantastical enough to satisfy the sci-fi aficionado nor silly enough to placate the comedy junkie, Headlander delivers only the scraps of what could have been a truly noteworthy space romp.
User Score
7.0

Mixed or average reviews- based on 36 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 36
  2. Negative: 7 out of 36
  1. Aug 25, 2016
    6
    Initially cool but after you realize the game is a boring slog the charm wears off fast. Combat is terrible and just ripping off heads was theInitially cool but after you realize the game is a boring slog the charm wears off fast. Combat is terrible and just ripping off heads was the best strategy but the combat is never hard because I think the developers know the controls are wonky. "Puzzles" are just finding the right thing to get you to progress. Never gets interesting or challenging. Disappointment. Full Review »
  2. Jul 29, 2016
    6
    Pros!:
    -Earl, the voice in your helmet, is a pretty cool guy. And I got attached to my disembodied head dude.
    -The sense of humor appealed
    Pros!:
    -Earl, the voice in your helmet, is a pretty cool guy. And I got attached to my disembodied head dude.
    -The sense of humor appealed to me (imagine any of Double Fine's previous stuff)
    -It's a metroidvania and I always find those fun to explore and find secrets in.

    Oks!:
    -World seems intriguing at first but the more you see blander it feels, acid tripping robots housing human conscious' is cool for like 20 minutes guys!

    Cons!:
    -Rigged shooting mechanic makes it feel like controlling a tank.
    -Lasers everywhere! You shoot lasers, your enemies shoot lasers, the walls reflect lasers-the screen gets filled with lasers and you can't help getting hit. I know your bodies are expendable but I still found it annoying that I couldn't avoid them.
    -Related to the point above - there is no jump or crouch, which would help a great deal in dodging lasers.
    -Terribly boring boss fights: At least they realize the controls are clunky and don't require you to do anything nimble
    Full Review »
  3. Sep 2, 2016
    6
    This is a unique game setting, the 70's sci fi is great, the ambient music, sounds and art style were brilliant. Apart from that its a slog toThis is a unique game setting, the 70's sci fi is great, the ambient music, sounds and art style were brilliant. Apart from that its a slog to go through, i only completed it for the platinum. It's just that the story is weak, the laser fights are to precise which makes fights hard and the boss fights was bad, annoyingly bad, if you die just before you kill the boss you have to do the whole 4 stages again. The map layout is similar to shadow complex so there is quite a lot of back tracking to do which is frustratingly boring. It is a different game just not a very good one. Full Review »