• Lorera

    2 hours playtime

    3 of 12 achievements

Platformer. You start with just left/right movement and jumping, but it doesn’t take long for you to get the grapple ability (RT), with the game’s focus being swinging across pits of spikes (while maintaining your momentum since you can’t just jump out of a grapple). However, the game is pretty rough at the start because quality-of-life improvements like “being able to increase your momentum while swinging” and “pulling yourself up to where you’ve grappled” are locked behind upgrades. To make things more irritating, you have to double-tap the analog RT button to activate the “reel into your grapple-point” ability, even though letting go of RT is how you detach your grapple.

Level design is okay. My main issue is that the game feels like a linear platformer that was hastily reworked into a metroidvania at the last minute. For example, when you find the statue in the cloud area, it’s at a dead end, and you have to go back through the cloud area, grass area, and lava area to get to the next part of the game: the forest area. Speaking of the forest area, it makes you backtrack to bring objects to a certain point in the area, but if you die, you lose that object and it goes back to where you picked it up, even if you hit a save point (and the backtracking involves falling down a shaft with spikes at the bottom; perhaps not technically a cheap hit, but still easy to forget about). I feel like the only reason the game was made nonlinear is because I’m pretty sure the first optional balloon you see can only be obtained with the reel-in ability, which you don’t get until later. There’s also no in-game map, so if you miss any balloons, you won’t have any idea where to look for them.

The final boss is a massive difficulty spike. The boss can summon a sigil that’ll kill you unless you swing clockwise around the lone platform in the arena, but said platform is too wide to make it in one swing, so you have to rely on using your weapon to increase your momentum enough on the second grapple to get back up. This can be pretty time consuming since–on top of your weapon only letting you shoot about once per half-second–you need to make sure you swing up clockwise instead of counterclockwise. Plus, the final boss can summon an enemy that’ll float directly towards you, and since those enemies take two hits to kill, you’re basically dead if you get stalled while hanging from the bottom of the platform (and even if you’re standing on the platform, the enemy can sometimes come at you in an angle that you can’t jump over).

Overall, while the beginning and end of the game aren’t that great, I think I can still give this a tentative recommendation since it’s free.