Do you believe in love at first sight? If not, Light Fall ought to make you think otherwise. Simple, yet visually stunning environments encompass a puzzling platformer experience that will glue your eyes to your computer screen. The serene soundtrack softens the blow when death begins to be a consistent outcome. Though I’ve only ventured into two acts of this maddeningly gorgeous game, Light Fall already has me wrapped around its little finger.
Bishop Games lures players into their artistic world using numerous engaging features. Not only are the visuals impressive, but the tranquil soundtrack corresponds flawlessly with Light Fall’s atmosphere. Delving into the Forgotten World of Numbra as a spikey-headed mystery fella entails a great deal of patience and good timing. Luckily, the harmonious ambiance calms the storm when a miscalculated jump onto an exquisite yet lethal crystal transports you back to your most recent checkpoint. Beauty is deceiving, folks. Rage may ensue, but at least Light Fall provides players with an infinite amount of second chances. Checkpoints aren’t hard to come by either.
The typical movement displayed in action-adventure games of leaping from platform to platform loses its flare after a while. Light Fall, on the other hand, presents a unique twist on getting from point A to point B. Spawning a magical box beneath your feet with the control of the Shadow Core allows you to generate your own route and reach unspeakable heights.
The smooth controls are a bonus. Mastering the art of propelling the boy skyward proves to be gratifying as well – especially when you almost descended into yet another dark abyss of failure. Yikes. The enchanted box only allows four fabrications before it locks up. Resetting the charmed cube is as simple as bouncing onto another platform. On occasion, simplicity doesn’t exist and our little hero becomes stranded. Therefore, strategizing your movements better prepares the boy for impending encounters. Trust me – I learned this the hard way more times than I’m willing to admit.
Light Fall’s magical box not only spawns platforms. The nifty cubes can be used to destroy objects or enemies obstructing the boy’s path, deflect lasers, or crank wheels to reveal segments of a level. The possibilities seem endless. Light Fall also does an exceptional job guiding players on performing the basic maneuvers as they occur. That way, you’re not gawking at the game in a dumbfounded manner, wondering where you went wrong.
Prevailing in Numbra is a challenge. However, the guidance of Stryx, a wise and irritable owl, reveals fun facts about Numbra’s history as it unfolds during the boy’s adventure. The grouchy bird offers some sage advice but isn’t a fan of the boy’s wild disposition. Stryx’s narration simply paves the path of historical events leading to the world’s current deterioration. Though the owl and I have merely scratched the surface of the happenings in Numbra, the intrigue continues.
Light Fall lays out its stages in Acts – the environments altering as a new chapter commences. From what I’ve experienced so far, confrontations similar to boss battles are programmed to challenge players before progressing onward. It’s funny in a sense that it’s not. Light Fall has a way of making you believe you’re a badass until you attempt to tackle one of these challenges.
The end of the first Act, for example, requires you to outrun a homicidal wave of water while simultaneously dodging killer fish and swaying crystals. Expect an array of vulgar words to spew from your mouth and a sore thumb from furiously pressing down on the right analog stick. On the bright side, there is nothing quite as satisfying as memorizing a pattern in your movements and finally succeeding...an unspeakable amount of attempts later.
Are you crying? It’s okay to cry. I might have.
Though my favorite feature of Light Fall is its dazzling atmosphere, the first two acts relentlessly threw me for a loop with its riveting gameplay. Exploring every nook and cranny proved to be beneficial, for secret orbs unlock historical facts disclosed at a checkpoint. You will swoon, momentarily rage, and then swoon again. What can I say? The vast world of Numbra has my heart – for now, at least.
Our Light Fall preview was conducted on PC via Steam with a code provided by the developers.