A small phenomena in indy games, especially platformers, is using a single solid color as a character. It's usually black, to make them look like they're in a shadow. Usually you're denying the player from seeing details, as it cuts down on animation, but is also a REALLY easy way to do it. Wanna know how to do games like that right? Look no further than Light Fall.
You start off in the world of Numbra, a dark shadowy world with no light. You don't know who you are, how you got there or....anything. You were Jason Bourned. So you have to run and jump and fight your way across as quickly as possible. As a premise it's not terrible, but the amnesia angle has been done a bit too much in my opinion. Still, despite that, the entire world ties it together, and it is presented in a very unique way.
Controls are fine. The running/jumping combos can trip you up. I personally had trouble with double jumping on walls. The controls require a few button hits that take a bit of used to getting used to, and the times where I was still getting used to it, my character decided it was over and embraced the fall.
The graphics are what make the game. Light Fall has this amazing color palette of blacks and aquas and purples that look like it's straight out of Avatar sometimes. Other times, like in water levels, it's this amazing blue-cerulean scheme. I usually don't like games that rely on using shadows or single color characters like that because it seems like a cheap cop-out, but here, it makes amazing sense, and with the silhouetted world, looks appropriate. Instead of being a hindrance, here, it adds to it. Also, being set at night in a dreamlike world brings out amazing backgrounds, like the moon and stars, that almost make it distracting while playing.
Gameplay is pretty much what you expect from a 2D platformer – running, jumping, double jumping, wall jumping and the usual. The one downside here is the shadowcore, which is a gigantic crutch. Basically it's this box that pops up when you want it to. So, if you can't figure out how to jump up? Shadowcore gives you a platform and gets ride of that challenge. And that's just one example. It makes the game unique, but essentially it's like getting rid of pits in Mario – you have a way across suddenly and the challenge goes away.
The music in the game is impressive. It's pretty much fantasy, but it has that otherworldliness to it that makes it a perfect match. Sound is another thing. Most games don't use voice works, especially 2D platformers like this, but Light Fall does, and it's....not great. It starts as a tutorial thing, nut the voice they used is so jarringly out of place. It decreased my enjoyment. If they didn't include that, I'd say it would have been great with just subtitles.
Frame rate of Light Fall was pretty great – for all the background stuff going on, it never really went down on quality. I didn't have any problem with it either in terms of errors. It's incredibly polished and manages to keep chugging along even with a lot going on on-screen.
Overall Light Fall is a pretty good 2D platformer. There are some parts that take away from the experience, but the graphics, music and play style combine to form a really fun game. It beats a lot of other platformers out there, and is a rare example of a game where a solid colored character not only makes sense, but is also not distracting. I had fun with it. For a game that makes you go really fast it's surprisingly chill.
Final Score: 8 out of 10
A copy of this game was provided for the purpose of review.