Teslagrad 2 Review - Screenshot 1 of 4
Captured on Nintendo Switch (Handheld/Undocked)

When the original Teslagrad released in 2013, the indie game scene was in a very different place. Long before modern Indie Worlds and Nindie Showcases and games from small developers put out by billion-dollar publishers, indie games still felt very much independent. The original game — recently re-released in Remastered form — always stood out as one of the more notable titles from a small dev, especially on the Wii U eShop. Now, a decade later, we’re in a different landscape. With the surprise release of Teslagrad 2, the question then is whether Norwegian studio Rain Games is able to capture lightning in a bottle once more.

Teslagrad 2 follows Lumina, a young girl who gets attacked by Vikings on her travels. She becomes stranded on Wyrmheim, a world heavily inspired by Scandinavia. Here she is tasked with harnessing and upgrading her electromagnetic powers to explore the world and find a way back home to her family.

Teslagrad 2 Review - Screenshot 2 of 4
Captured on Nintendo Switch (Handheld/Undocked)

While the story is present, it clearly takes a backseat to the gameplay. There is no dialogue or cutscenes to convey the plot, only the occasional television screen you come across that provides a bit of backstory. While clearly an intentional decision to keep the gameplay flowing smoothly, it comes at the cost of a story that feels rather barebones and workaday. Thankfully, where the story falls short, the gameplay more than makes up for it.

At its core, Teslagrad 2 is a 2D platformer with light Metroidvania elements. While there is a large interconnected world to explore, for the most part, Lumina will be following a linear path to each destination. There are plenty of secrets and collectible cards to find by backtracking, but the Metroidvania elements are definitely on the lighter side compared to what one might expect. Instead, there is a larger focus on traversing the environment through puzzle solving, which the game does exceptionally well.

In the Teslagrad series, the name of the game is electricity and magnetism. Throughout your adventure, you’ll discover several new electric-based powers to become stronger and increase your mobility. These can range from the starting blip-dash that phases through walls and enemies, to a magnetic aura that lets you cling to walls and ceilings.

Teslagrad 2 Review - Screenshot 3 of 4
Captured on Nintendo Switch (Docked)

The slide ability is easily the highlight here. Unlike a traditional take on the move, this upgrade allows you to slide indefinitely while building up speed and momentum. Very quickly you’ll be sliding around huge half-pipes and chaining massive jumps together. And once you learn to combine it with your other powers, you will soon be doing crazy tricks you never expected to be possible at the beginning.

This joy of mobility is a cornerstone of the whole game, and the primary reason why Teslagrad 2 is such a great experience. From scaling a giant tower with polarized tractor beams to climbing up waterfalls, you are constantly being faced with puzzles and challenges that test your movement in new and exciting ways. There are also several bosses you’ll face along the way, each testing your newly acquired powers. None of these are particularly challenging, but do offer a nice change of pace from zipping through the world. Plus, the generous checkpoint system means death in either a boss fight or puzzle will only set you back a few seconds.

Teslagrad 2 Review - Screenshot 4 of 4
Captured on Nintendo Switch (Handheld/Undocked)

Much like the original, the visuals in Teslagrad 2 are incredible, particularly on the Switch OLED Model. The game uses a gorgeous hand-drawn aesthetic, with characters moving almost like they are string puppets. And for the most part, things run very smoothly on the platform. There were only a couple of instances of the frame rate dipping in the final area, but given that there are no load screens in Teslagrad 2, it is certainly a technical achievement that it runs as well as it does on Switch.

The only area in which the presentation stumbles a bit is in the music. While having an orchestral soundtrack is commendable, the Nordic folk music doesn’t mesh as well with the gameplay and atmosphere compared to the more electronic pieces.

The biggest complaint, however, is Teslagrad 2’s length. On a first playthrough, it will take roughly 2-3 hours to reach the credits. While this means it doesn’t overstay its welcome — a blessing compared to the alternative — there is a good chance you are going to be left wanting more. While there are ways to extend the playtime, such as seeking out the game’s 81 collectible cards and handful of secret upgrades, there is little to encourage coming back once you have reached the credits.


After a decade of waiting, Teslagrad 2 is undeniably a great follow-up to the original. The game is gorgeous, movement feels excellent, and the world is a joy to explore. What's here is very strong, but the short length means it's all over too quickly, which may come as a disappointment given the 10-year gap between this sequel and the original game. Despite that, if you are a fan of the original Teslagrad, or games with great mobility in general, you will surely enjoy Teslagrad 2.