Embers Of Mirrim Review
Guacamelee developers Creative Bytes introduces an original way to navigate around the levels in this platform-puzzler but does Embers of Mirrim try too hard?
Although there is no narrative other than the initial tutorial instructions, the cut scenes give you the general gist of the story which sees a couple of creatures; that could only be described as cats with antlers, from opposite factions – light and dark, merging together to become one entity with the power to split itself into two embers: that being light and dark.
As you progress through the beginning levels, the game will slowly introduce you to the basic traversal options and also its approach to the puzzles found within Embers of Mirrim. This is where the splitting of Mirrim comes into play. You’ll start off by splitting yourself into one ember allowing you to teleport to hard-to-reach areas. Once you’ve merged, you’ll then begin to take control of both embers at the same time, which can be tricky, especially if your noggin isn’t used to multitasking. The left stick controls the light ember (green) along with the left trigger to activate switches and the sorts, whereas the right stick and right trigger will control the dark ember (purple) and interactions. However, controlling these embers will only last a short period of time therefore, limiting how far you can travel with them. To help with this aspect and which so happens to be the primary focus of the puzzles, are ‘nets’ in the background, allowing these embers to sustain their form for as long as they remain in them.
As you continue on your journey, these puzzles get increasingly difficult, making it much more difficult for your mind to react to both stimuli at the same time. Having to control the light ember to navigate towards the net on your upper right with the left stick, whilst controlling the dark ember to move it to the net on the lower right using the right stick, all the more whilst reaching both nets at the same time across a large gap, forcing you with precision timing – will more often than not leave you with scrambling thumbs and dying an incredibly lot.
Whilst the background scenery is nice, having a white character blended in with snow and a dark character blended in with black caverns isn’t the best of ideas visually, as half the time you’ll lose track of where the characters are. Thankfully, this is more of an issue at the beginning of the game. The camera autofocuses in and out at set points during the level, leaving you jumping across platforms and falling to your demise quite often. But again, this only seemed to be an issue for the earlier stages of the game.
Embers of Mirrim tries to be original by incorporating unique ways of getting from point A to point B, but to some this may be an easy facet to grasp whereas to others, it can leave you frustrated. This title would have been a lot more enjoyable if you could move both embers individually before you reach a net, without having to worry about how long it’s going to last.
Embers of Mirrim is available to purchase digitally from the Xbox Store priced at £15.99.
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