Sawbuck Gamer


Pressing The Issue

ButtonX20 is all about push-button simplicity—except it’s not that simple.

By Steve Heisler • May 24, 2013

Sawbuck Gamer is our daily review of a free or cheap game ($10 or less).

There are multiple ways to push the red button. Twenty ways, to be exact. When you do, a yellow bar is removed, giving you access to a key that opens a white door—freedom to the next level. Colors are important in ButtonX20 because no matter which of the 20 levels you are playing, they are a constant. The big red button stares you in the face at the beginning, daring you not to push it. The yellow bar is a warning sign, like a traffic light: Touch it, and you have to start the level over. The white door is sweet relief from the trials put in front of you, like a movie where the main character dies for a moment and approaches Heaven, only to be told it’s yet his time. Just as the hero is always sent back to Earth, in ButtonX20, you’re sent to the next room—and another red button.

You know this, and yet ButtonX20 invites you to put on a grand show as if you don’t know what’s coming. Each level has a distinct way of asking you to push said button. The first time, you just jump on it to remove the yellow laser barrier and opening the door. Later, it might disappear entirely or situate itself at the end of a long obstacle course. The variety of button-pushing tactics is the playable equivalent of your brain’s logic after a long night of drinking. You wake up, hungover beyond belief, vowing never to drink that much Miller High Life again. Except that a short while later, whiskey seems okay. Maybe a margarita will soften the blow? If it’s a different color drink, it’s a different experience, right?

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9 Responses to “Pressing The Issue”

  1. Cloks says:

    I made it to the last level and then quit because the floaty jumping annoyed me and I couldn’t finish the game.

    I’d give it 3 out of 5 George Jetsons.

    • HobbesMkii says:

      How much is that in Elroys?

      • How about in Astro years?

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    • Hunter Taylor says:

      Yeah, the game was cute but the controls kinda of annoyed me.  Not a bad way to spend ten (work) minutes though!

  2. His_Space_Holiness says:

    Push that button? The big red button? The shiny, CANDY-LIKE button?

    Oh, very well.

  3. Merve says:

    Some of these are pretty nifty, especially the “Going Under” level.

    I like the message that pops up at the end: “THANK YOU FOR PRESSING MY BUTTONS!”

  4. caspiancomic says:

    682 seconds y’all! Get some! I was stumped at first by the “magic button” one, in level 9.

  5. zed_zeddington says:

    I feel like “This is the Only Level” did this better, with less wonky controls.