Mega Man X, Metroid and Bloodborne are an odd set of inspirations, but from the demo I just played of Lore Finder, a Lovecraft-inspired exploration platformer, they blend surprisingly well. Developed by Kitsune Games and currently crowdfunding on Kickstarter, Lore Finder is halfway funded after just one day, and backed up with a ‘vertical slice’ early demo which you can play here. While condensed (compared to what’s planned for the full game) it’s a fun bit of running and gunning with a bit of LGBTQ representation in its cast too. An ominous trailer lurks below.
I’m told that Lore Finder’s demo truncates things, but the devs wanted to convey its core themes of the game in a short span of time, and I think they managed it. The thing about magic involving tentacles and biting maws from beyond; it’s meant to be bad news. Each power-up you pick up in the demo seems to up the ante, with more fleshy growths appearing around the level, more cultists transforming into tentacled monsters and more eye-bat beasties hovering annoying overhead. Reminds me of gaining ‘insight’ in Bloodborne – a double-edged but tempting sword.
A neat concept would mean nothing if it wasn’t fun, but I dig the feeling of it so far. The game looks and sounds a little bit like Axiom Verge, but with a larger, slightly heavier player character. You start out with just a revolver that can only be fired while standing still on the ground, and shoots faster if you hold the button, limiting your options. You later get a faster-firing spell that can be used in the air, but does less damage and can still only be fired horizontally, making a puzzle out of approaching some enemies. There’s some more depth to it, but it’s best tried for yourself.