First Impression: Sunblaze
Developer: Games From Earth
Release Date: 03 June, 2021
By Chris Picone, 03 June 2021
My very first impression: Cute graphics, fast-paced, looks like a fun platformer. And it is! I gather it draws a lot of inspiration from Celeste but I haven’t played that yet (despite having purchased it more than 6 months ago) so I’m very much playing it for it’s own merits.
Before I even got into the game, I was sucked in by the tutorial. The pixels are really nicely polished, the characters very cute, and – what’s this? It has a sense of humour! Delightful. Likewise, the gameplay I found immediately interesting. The main thing that sticks out: Everything moves. So, unlike most platformers, you can’t just rush into each level. You need to sit there and plan out every move, thinking about where each platform is going to move when you trigger it, or how you’re going to time event triggers so you can jump and dash from A to B to C without being crushed, stabbed, burnt, or falling to your death. Once you hit go, the action’s on. No more time for thinking, it’s all down to reflexes.
I’m not going to lie, the game’s quite challenging. I got through the first chapter no worries, and even collected enough artifacts to unlock a hard mode. I got stuck somewhere in the second chapter for a while but thankfully there’s also a “Zen mode.” Sunblaze is also much larger than I anticipated: Six chapters and there’s quite a few missions in each chapter, which allows for very decent diversity in scenery, mechanics, bosses, etc.
So, my verdict? If you enjoy platformers, don’t hesitate. This one’s premium.