Light in the Dark, Made by Dreamgate Studios, is a physics heavy puzzle game where you, as a Totem, a cutesy little creature, are tasked with collecting your scattered young by shining beams of light on them and, if you can get the angles right, stars, which are necessary to unlock new levels.
The story is about as complex as my introduction described it, as in it isnâ€™t. But the fact that it is so unobtrusive makes it a plus in my book, it allows you to focus on whatâ€™s really important in a mobile game, the bite sized hopefully satisfying and addictive gameplay. The question is, does Light in the Dark have what it takes to keep gamers coming back, or choosing it over Angry Birds or Threes?
The controls, which involve you dragging your finger over the wide-eyed, limbless, light emitting protagonist are effective but grow a bit problematic when other tools are introduced. Fine movements, like twisting two fingers to shift the angle of a mirror were especially difficult. Maybe it wouldnâ€™t have been so difficult if I was playing the game on a larger tablet screen, but I think the majority of players would be playing on a phone screen, so this is a valid concern until every single phone is a phablet.
The gameâ€™s difficulty curve is well structured, after every five levels you are tasked with completing a maze by employing all of the skills you have been progressively learning over the preceding levels. After you collect enough stars, either by earning them or paying a small fee, par for the course here and nowhere near as blatant as most other mobile games of its type you move on to another tomb. Each tomb has a different theme and different thematically oriented obstacles, which I thought was a nice touch to increase gameplay variety.
The cartoony and vibrant art style give off an air of whimsy to the game, and I think that the studio has a good handle on how to craft a distinctive yet functional mix of both visual and audio cues. The little animated touches that signify when a baby, or a mummy, is waking up were, even though those may sound like minor things, were nice Â touches of player oriented feedback and Iâ€™m curious to see what the studio is able to do next.
Light in the Dark is a balanced, well put together game whose only fault is asking more dexterous motion than its players may be able to easily manage on the average smartphone screen. It doesnâ€™t beat you over the head with pay to win options and has a distinctive visual presence that should separate it sufficiently from Cut the Rope and the Rovio crew as a whole. I heartily recommend picking it up.
The Final Verdict:
Light in the Dark is available for iOS, Android and Windows Phone.
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