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So this just came out for Switch and is a pretty fantastic title so far that I haven't really seen anyone talk about here so why not have a thread to bring it to people's attention a bit more? I'm sure that some may pass up on it for now due to being just a Super Meat Boy clone and while it does play similarly, it definitely has a lot more going for it with an involved story, fun characters, creepy and hard hitting themes that I just did not expect. And that soundtrack is so, so good. But back to its gameplay, it's a bit more open in design while still remaining fairly linear but rather than have small set pieces, it's a bigger level with challenge rooms chained together while keeping the exploration aspect for those that want to hunt down for secrets/optional challenges. It never really feels like the game is unfairly hard though and its controls are tight and precise, making overcoming its difficulty a rewarding and fun experience. So check it out if you haven't done so already! And if you have, talk about it here!
Well the game is divided into chapters. One chapter is played from beginning to end which I guess you can call a "level" if you will. That level is then divided into sections, usually 3 I think? I haven't replayed them all yet to collect all items. Then each section lists which strawberries have or have not been collected so you can start from that section and have a general idea of where to look. And taking things even further, you can turn on accessibility options which I've heard just lets you skip areas entirely so even if you do miss an area due to not being able to go back, you can easily just replay the level, turn on these accessibility options and skip your way to the area that you missed. So really, it's a non-issue in the end if you take advantage of these options.
So yeah, maybe the design isn't ideal but who's gonna 100% a level on its first go anyway? The game was designed with trying to be accessible to all levels of play and was praised for it. You just choose how hard or how easy you want it to be.
Right. I get that I can go back through and see the stuff I missed, and that it's an easy process. I just think it's unfortunate that their design actively discourages discovery when the sense of discovery in the game is really impressive.
At the end of the day it's a minor gripe. It's not like I think this game is otherwise a 10/10 but this one aspect brings it down to, like, a 2/10 or something, lol...I'm just really enjoying the game and I just think it could have been even better.
Makes sense! I guess, in a sense, ALL games could be better, ha ha. But yeah, it's super cool to analyze (to me, anyway) what aspects could be improved in any game, and absorb that info to try to add to a growing knowledge of what players want and don't want from a design perspective. :)
For example, I have a little running list of Stardew Valley improvements going, just so I can try to wrap my head around why it is I like-but-don't-perfectly-love the game. (A big one, I think, is running speed...)
Well you unlock a minecart right next to the farm later which lets you get to the mine INSTANTLY. That is such an important upgrade, too. It made me want to play so much more. Otherwise I totally 100% agree. It was such a pain walking up there every time.
Thing is, it could be solved SO easily. You add a speed stat to the shoe equipment you already get, and boom, it's done. Doesn't have to be more complicated than that!
Agreed, it would have been nice if after, say, a week in game it auto-unlocked. I believe you have to do a quest thing in the Rec Center to make it happen, but obviously the game doesn't tell you that, which leads to some players possibly never unlocking what amounts to a game-break fix. Problematic design.
I'd like to check this out but I have to admit, the appeal of a Super Meat Boy esque challenge level is kind of waning on me. I know that it's difficult to make a challenging game but at times I just think... does it HAVE to be this hard?
Still, interested. I don't want to use any Assist options. I'm having a slightly hard time at a new job and I'm wondering if this game might kind of go hand in hand with the fact that I've been a little bummed. Or maybe that means it's not a good time to play this, lol.
@PogueSquadron I haven't played much Super Meat Boy, and it's been a long time since, but from what I understand and can imagine Celeste is not as demanding as that. The hardest challenges are definitely the unlockable levels. I never got all that frustrated playing Celeste, and I'm not trying to suck my own dick here ('cause I've died a looooot), I'm just trying to say that the game is good at feeling fair and keeping you calm with its atmospheric soundtrack. I'm not sure how you tend to be when you feel bummed out, but playing Celeste was a fairly relaxing experience for me, despite it being all about high precision platforming.
Yeah it doesn't feel as much like it is specifically trying to punish you as Super Meat Boy did, but then again I'm still only a few worlds into it so we'll see. I've definitely died a lot but it rarely felt like "how on Earth am I supposed to get past this?!"
Credits rolled. Wow, parts of the closing stretch were just insane. Just insane!
Went back to previous areas and got all of the collectibles in the first four chapters. It's amazing how easy getting around these levels feels when going back to them, when they felt really challenging before. Had to look up how to get a couple of the crystal hearts, but now I have four so I can do the Core.
Probably will start to take a look at the B-Sides after that, and see how much longer I want to stick with this. Already put a solid 20 hours and 4000+ deaths into it. Can't complain at all about how much content there is.
Finished the Ch. 8/Core level last night. Holy cow, that got crazy. Initially I thought limiting your dashes was going to make it less fun and more frustrating, and that was true at first. But things ended up becoming really amazing by the end. There were a few obvious strawberries that I missed, but unlike some of the levels earlier in the game, I was just happy to make it to the next screen and move on.
Stage 5 was longgggggg. That might be one of my only real complaints, instead of short little bursts as these type of games tend to have it has these super long stages with no logical breaking point to quit for the session until the end of the stage. Yeah I can always put the Switch into sleep mode and come back, but it just feels like I'm stopping at the wrong point. It's also not totally clear to me what happens if I turn the Switch off mid-stage... are there checkpoints, or would I have to start the whole stage over again?!
With that said I like the feel of longer stages with a real context versus just a bunch of quick little screens, so maybe I just think they could have clarified better how checkpoints work.
@Zero You can save and quit whenever and it acts like a sort of quick save. Also there is a symbol that shows up on some walls at different points in the stage that represents a checkpoint. When you replay stages you can start from these checkpoints.
In case anyone's interested, Fangamer's now got Celeste merch. Not my favourite Jon Kay prints on those shirts, but maybe one of you guys will like them. The T-shirt and print quality is fantastic over at Fangamer, so no need to worry about that if you like the imagery.