Teslagrad 2 Preview Impressions – Now You’re Thinking With Electric Blinks

Here at EIP Gaming, we cover plenty of dense AAA titles — but a well-made indie game will always find its way to our hearts. And Teslagrad 2 is a well-made game indeed. It’s a charming, clever puzzle platformer, developed by Rain Games and coming to all platforms in Spring of 2023.

Teslagrad 2 is the story of Lumina, a young girl whose airship has crashed in a distant and treacherous land. Lumina is a teslamancer: she can control electromagnetism using special tools. But when her ship’s brought down by a band of Vikingesque marauders, she’s deprived of most of her powers, left with only a fairly weak teleport. With no way to defend herself, Lumina must run for her life. But, by exploring the dangerous world of Wyrmheim, Lumina will find new powers, learn to navigate her environment, and eventually, return home to her family.


Everything about the presentation of Teslagrad 2 is stunning. The menu screen greets you with absolutely gorgeous Norse-inspired music, a female singer’s voice rising to a crescendo. When you press start, you’re treated to a hand-painted, lavishly animated cutscene where Lumina’s ship is attacked; it’s quick and to the point, yet full of detail. I watched it two or three times for this review, and I noticed new things every time. The cutscenes aren’t voiced– all information is given through the visuals- but the animation and music are enough to carry the story. You get what’s at stake, and you feel for the scrappy protagonist.

Teslagrad 2's intro cutscene
The cutscenes all remind me of a really good picture book. It’s something about the painterly style, I think.

The character design is fantastic. Lumina is adorable and scrappy-looking. Her design — with its loose cloak, chunky adornments, and brass gauntlets — marries the game’s Viking and steampunk sensibilities. The marauders look imposing and rough, with their leader being at least twice Lumina’s size. The teslamancer who appears to give Lumina drips and dribbles of aid looks ominous and mysterious. And the grues — the main enemies you’ll run into — can change from “eerie and almost elegant” to “scrungly, slavering abomination that wants you dead” just by opening their mouths.

Once you get into the game, the environmental design is also top-notch. Every mini-area has its own look and feel to it, from creepy underground caverns to tranquil fields full of fat sheep. In a metroidvania, you need to be able to clearly define different areas, and those areas can be as big as a zone or as small as a room. A bad metroidvania has rooms that all look the same, or rooms that look the same within a zone. In Teslagrad 2, no two rooms look exactly alike. When I was thrown back into an old area after gaining a powerup, my first thought wasn’t, “where am I?” It was, “Oh, this connects to that?!”


Speaking of metroidvania gameplay, I’m happy to report that the gameplay in Teslagrad 2 is just as fantastic as the music and art direction. The game’s a solid mix of puzzle-platforming and exploration-platforming. Moment to moment, you’ll be solving momentum-based physics puzzles. You want to get from one side of the room to the other, and doing so requires a mix of quick thinking and careful execution.

Teslagrad 2 Gameplay
Some powerups are surprise tools that will help you later. This is one of them.

Lumina’s main platforming tools are her blink (a short-range teleport with a short cooldown) and her bubble (an electromagnetic field that makes your jumps floatier and your falls slower, among other things). The blink’s useful for quick in-air dashing. Meanwhile, because the bubble is electromagnetic, it’s affected by all kinds of electromagnetic objects. There are objects that pull you in and push you away; there are objects that only exist when you’re surrounded by your bubble, and objects that switch the polarity of your bubble.

All of your movement options are snappy and responsive. The quick cooldowns mean you’re never without an option you need, and they feel utterly under your control. I never once blinked to a place I didn’t expect to blink to, which is impressive for a teleport power.

Teslagrad 2 Gameplay
Of course, we illustrate discussion of snappy movement options with a character standing still. Of course we do.

It’s a good toolkit, and the levels complement it nicely. They’re definitely built with Miyamoto-style platforming design philosophy in mind — teach the player what to do in a safe and controlled environment, give them a series of increasingly difficult puzzles, and then test the player on what they’ve learnt with a more complicated challenge. Sometimes, a ‘level’ will be a single room; other times, it’ll be a long setpiece. Neither kind of level outstays its welcome, though; it always feels like the challenges are just the right length.

Of course, every game has its flaws, and Teslagrad 2 is no exception. It’s a puzzle platformer. It’s legally required to have puzzles where you chuck a box across the room, either to platform or to attack enemies. And unlike everything else in the game, the box chucking is awkward and hard to control. It’s impossible to get a box to land with any degree of precision, and usually, the levels are set up so it’s difficult to push the boxes. You’re way more likely to drop it down a hole by mistake and have to reset. I really liked the design of most of the box chucking puzzles, especially because it’s your only form of attack — having to deal with such a balky, awkward tool disempowers the player and makes the enemies feel scarier. But the execution was more frustrating than fun.

Overall, though, I had a lot of fun in my time with Teslagrad 2. It was a dream to play, and I wanted to keep going even through the most frustrating sections. I can’t wait to scale the full game’s tower and explore its secrets.


As a disabled gamer, I’m always keenly aware of what parts of a game are and are not accessible for people with disabilities. Accessibility is a tricky thing — no game is 100% accessible to all people, and choices that make a game more accessible for some people make it less accessible for others. But you need to make those choices mindfully, and not all games do. Teslagrad 2 falls right in the middle for accessibility. It’s not the worst game I’ve ever played, but it’s also not the best, especially for anyone with epilepsy, migraines, or other conditions that are triggered by flashing or strobing lights.

The developers clearly put some thought into accessibility, and they got a lot of stuff right. The game has no subtitles, but it doesn’t need them– if you can see well enough to play the game, you can understand the story just fine, with or without the ability to hear. All story is delivered through the animation, done in pantomime. The game’s menus are also designed with a minimum of text, and that text has been translated into a number of languages. If you struggle to read, or the game isn’t written in your language, you still don’t need to use the menu to do more than exit the game. Where the game chooses to use color-coding, they use red and blue — and the colors are different values, so they read differently even if you’re colorblind.

But the game isn’t fully accessible, either. The two biggest complaints I had with the game were that there was no control remapping, and there were a number of flashing lights. The way the game’s default keyboard controls are set up made my chronic hand pain flare up, and I couldn’t change those controls at all. Don’t get me wrong, it was a totally reasonable control scheme for the game, and if I took breaks, it worked well enough– but remapping could have made it more playable for me.

The bigger problem was the photosensitivity issues. Teslagrad 2 is not accessible — and might even be dangerous — for gamers with epilepsy, migraine, and other conditions that are triggered by flashing or strobing lights. It’s nowhere near as bad as your usual YouTube bait horror game, but both the blink and the bubble often produce a flashing light. In the earlier stages, this isn’t too much of a problem, because a lot of the rooms have fairly light-colored backgrounds. But a flashing bright light on a dark background– like, say, the blink effect on the background of the ruins later in the demo– is enough to trigger photosensitive migraines.

I ultimately had to put the demo down for a while, because it was too painful to keep going. And while I can’t speak for someone who gets seizures, there are a number of dark backgrounds in the early areas, too. A slider or toggle to decrease the intensity of the flashing lights would make this game so much more playable — and safe — for anyone who has to deal with a photosensitive condition.

Again: Teslagrad 2 is a fantastic experience. It was worth playing, even though it wasn’t accessible for me. The devs clearly put some thought and care into making sure as many people as possible could play it– they just didn’t quite go far enough.

Pictured: colorblind-friendly light effects. Not pictured: epilepsy-unfriendly flashing lights.


The Teslagrad 2 demo we reviewed was only around 10% of the game. If that 10% is representative of the game as a whole, it’s well worth your time. It’s cute, creative, well-designed, and snappy to play. The map’s already expansive, but easy to navigate; the different platforming challenges were well-explained and came together in a satisfying way.

Teslagrad 2 Gameplay 6
Standing on the ceiling. #justTeslamancerThings

If you like the mind-bending, space-flinging puzzle-solving of Portal, the exploration of Metroidvanias, or the momentum-based platforming of Celeste, keep an eye on Teslagrad 2. There’s something here for just about every platformer fan, and even if you’re not a platformer fan, the aesthetic and presentation are well worth your time.

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Malcolm Schmitz
Malcolm Schmitz

Malcolm Schmitz is a freelance writer from the United States. He loves life sims, JRPGs, and strategy games, and loves modding games even more than he loves playing them.

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