Review

The indie game scene has really progressed in the last few years, bringing full innovation to titles that might not otherwise see the light of day. Competitions are also a good thing and this one was actually the winner of Ludum Dare 29, an online accelerated game development challenge in April, with the initial game being developed in just 24 hours.  The Sun and Moon has an interesting mechanic. Since the theme of the competition was “Beneath the Surface”, the developer chose to let you dive into the ground. Your momentum is conserved, but gravity is reversed allow you to fling yourself high into the air or go deep beneath the surface. It takes a little while to get used to, but once you do, you will be flinging and flying all over the place.

Sun and Moon Screen (1)

I played the “Alpha” Steam version of The Sun and Moon, so a few shortcomings I noticed will hopefully be addressed as the game nears its official release. I used an Xbox 360 controller (my control of choice on the PC) and although it supports it, things like support for the Start button are surprisingly missing, still requiring me to use a keyboard for a few things.  Such is the plight of users on a PC over a console it would seem.  The game’s graphics are a mixture of pixel art and smooth animation, not too dissimilar to other recent offerings like Luftrausers.  The sound is simple and the music is catchy, although it started to grate on me after a while. More selection would be appreciated although the style of music matches the game perfectly.

At its core The Sun and Moon is a platformer with puzzles to solve. It starts out relatively easy with having to collect enough to proceed to the end of the level.  It ramps up pretty quickly however and I challenge anyone to get through all of the 150 levels that are included.  Once enemies are introduced, you are going to require an extreme amount of precision and, for me, this is where the game goes from challenging to frustrating. If you are looking for a walk in the park, try one of the Barbie Horse simulators because this one is extremely challenging.

Sun and Moon Screen (3)

One of the more interesting things about the Steam release over the browser one is that the game allows you to unlock levels in a non-linear fashion. If you get stuck on a certain level or don’t like it you can branch off in a different direction and come back to it at a later time. The levels also contain time challenges which of course are easier to work on once you have solved the levels once or twice before.

The Sun and Moon is not for everyone, but if you love platformers with great challenge and minimalistic graphics then this will be right up your alley. If only we could mess with gravity in the real world, that would be prove to be a challenge now wouldn’t it?



About the Author

Syd Bolton
Syd Bolton surrounds himself in thousands of classic video games as Canada’s top video game collector at the Personal Computer Museum in Brantford, Ontario, Canada. He plays all of the latest games on his 80" Sharp TV and provides the "Lost Treasures" segment during The OMG! Hour. Follow Syd on Twitter @sydbolton.