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Lumione Review: Great gaming experience

The game scenes extend from near to far, from inside to outside, and the transition is very natural. The distinct watercolor art style, appropriate dynamic effect processing, and ethereal background music make people feel like they are in a fairy tale stage about the ocean.

At the same time, the scene characteristics in the four chapters are different, and the visual elements are also diverse enough. For example, the tranquil forest in the early stage of the game adopts the conventional deep blue tone, and is embellished with coral, water plants, and fish schools, which is very consistent with our conventional understanding of the ocean world, giving people a feeling of tranquility and comfort. The theme tone in the lost valley changes to purple, and many roots and vines are added, making the background look winding and deeper. The atmosphere created is more mysterious.

Of course, for a game, just looking glamorous on the surface is far from enough. In addition to the beautiful landscape shaping, “Lumione” is also quite distinctive in gameplay and level design, which can provide players with enough “surprises” along the way.

The game uses the traditional horizontal board clearance mode. Players need to control the protagonist with precise operations to avoid traps and jump to various platform terrains to pass levels.

The operating system of this work is quite simple, a joystick or arrow keys are used to control movement, plus three buttons for jumping, grabbing, and swimming, which are the basic operation content of the game.

Throughout the game, “roaming” is the most core mechanism. When Glimmer jumps into the air, players can hold down the corresponding key to fly short distances and adjust the direction to change the flight trajectory. Almost all levels in the game need to apply this operation to achieve some seemingly impossible clearance routes.

The operation of “roaming” and adjusting direction is easy to explain, just like the ripple trajectory left by a finger crossing the water surface. However, it is not easy to use it skillfully in the game. Firstly, after using “roaming” once, it can only be recharged and used again when landing again or encountering specific game mechanisms (such as bubbles in the screen). Therefore, during the strategy process, players need to plan a rough route in their minds and clarify the timing of using “roaming”.

Touching bubbles can charge “roaming”, allowing Glimmer to fly farther

Taking the level in the following picture as an example. According to the route in the picture, players need to first avoid the blue laser moving up and down, jump onto the middle stone wall, and then find a way to land on the right platform before leaving.

Assuming that using “roaming” from the beginning can easily avoid the laser. However, after jumping onto the stone wall, since there is no landing and no bubbles around, Glimmer cannot use “roaming” again. As a result, the player has no other means to land on the right platform and can only reopen the level.

Therefore, the correct approach for this level is to use normal jumps to avoid the blue laser and jump onto the stone wall. After reaching the stone wall, then activate “roaming” to reach the platform on the right.

In addition to mastering the timing of use, adjusting the direction of “roaming” also tests the player’s operation. The terrain structure of levels in the game is often rich and varied. In many places, players need to operate the Glimmer touch mechanism to continuously “turn” and roam to pass, which is smooth and satisfying. However, this can also easily cause players to make mistakes, resulting in situations such as “mid-lane collapse” and “sudden death”. Fortunately, the game’s rebirth speed is quite fast, which can facilitate players to repeatedly challenge themselves.

The operating mechanism of Glimmer can be said to have remained unchanged, but the action experience in the process is not singular. This work combines the level mechanism design with Glimmer’s actions and various mechanism traps to produce quite rich changes.

For example, in Chapter 2 of the Trial Ruins, grabbing some special mechanisms will produce an aperture. The originally deadly trap within the aperture range will become a platform for interaction and landing. And the originally safe platform will also turn into a trap.

In some levels, white bubbles can charge Glimmer’s “roaming” action, while yellow bubbles can make Glimmer adjust the direction and launch like a cannon. Players can use the “roaming” action to shuttle between the two bubbles and quickly reach the finish line, just like in a rhythm game, by grasping the direction, angle, timing and frequency of keystrokes. Some levels will gradually darken over time, and players need to find a light source before the screen completely turns black to continue.

In some levels, octopus and other boss-like design elements will also be added, and the experience at this time is completely different from the regular level, emphasizing a sense of crisis and a tense level atmosphere.

However, the process of some levels in the game is relatively long, which is not easy for players who are not good at platform jumping to conquer. In addition, the exit positions of some levels are also slightly unclear, occasionally making it difficult for players to distinguish.

With over 170 levels and a large amount of level content design, it’s hard to imagine that this is a game created by a team of only four recent college graduates.

The mechanism design in “Lumione” is rich but extremely challenging. For ordinary players like me, it is inevitable to constantly encounter failures and deaths. In the process of repeated failures, I will also adjust my thinking and strategies to pass the level. From the planning of the route, the way to deal with the mechanism, to the direction, angle, position of the jump, etc. Completing levels in the game not only relies on timely reactions, but also requires continuous thinking. The satisfaction and sense of achievement once these difficult levels are passed are incomparable.

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