Get ready to feel feelings like you’ve never felt before, emotional puzzle-platformer Ori And The Blind Forest [official site] is just around the corner, with release coming on Wednesday. The launch trailer has been let loose, showing it isn’t all sad bears and melancholy trees – there’s also extremely angry owls and lava. It also had a short segment on stream at PAX East, showing off the intriguing way objects, enemies and projectiles can be used to throw yourself around a level.
Oo-er, things aren’t looking quite so peace and harmony and I’m a bit sad my big furry friend isn’t moving now. In fact compared to the original trailer (Alice’s best work, post title wise) Ori is a lot more action packed and platformery. Not necessarily an indicator of its quality, but adjust expectations accordingly.
The Twitch stream gives a better indication of what it will be like to play. It’s faster and more agile than I expected, with one of the producers stating that the first aim was to get movement feeling right. This is great – so often the let down with indie titles isn’t in the story they try to tell, but the lack of polish in how it is told. With four years of work, Ori looks as slick as Meat Boy. I’m particularly excited for this bash mechanic, leaping off the backs of enemies, firing their goo back at them and opening up secret passages.
There’s no accounting for on-stream nerves, but it did seem a mite frustrating. More familiarity with the game could prove otherwise, but the gorgeous art wasn’t the best for giving second to second indicators of where to go, meaning restarts are inevitable. That’s fine – nothing wrong with challenge, and there’s a save anywhere system – but it’s important to have sections where the flow of the game can take over and you’re moving at pace without interruption.