Reviews for Child of Light


Very nice, fairy-tale inspired game!

Maxmetpt | June 25, 2015 | See all Maxmetpt's reviews »

Context Child of Light is what many call a AAA indie game. It's an hybrid between a JRPG and a (light) platformer, from Jeffrey Yohalem, best known for Far Cry 3. It's quite the leap, from one game to another! The team who made this game was far smaller, but more focused as a result. It comes from a place of fairy-tales and fantasy worlds, as form of escapism. It's definitely different from what we usually see in videogames, especially from big companies. Its art caught my eye a while ago, and since it was on sale, I decided to finally try it! Unfortunately, due to university, I couldn't play it all in a few days, having to play it sparingly, in the span of 2 weeks instead. It took mee a little over 15hours to beat, with every sidequest done, on "Expert" difficulty. Presentation As I said, its visuals were the first aspect of this game to catch my attention. It instantly reminded me of John Bauer's work (who is rather well known for his Swedish Folktale illustrations -- Paradox's Runemaster was mainly inspired by his art as well!), which was a nice surprise. Later on, as I played, I dug a bit deeper and discovered that it was indeed inspired by not only his artwork, but all of the Golden Age of Illustration, which I didn't know about. Look it up, it's great! The whole game is hand-drawn and painted, with the addition of some 3D animation as well as lighting effects. Comparisons with pop-up books aren't unfounded either, as the game has lots of different layers of textures in the backgrounds, making the game feel very organic. The art in general is rough, almost looking like a draft, but I feel that was intentional. All in all, the game looks great, and certainly unique (!), but I would have liked to see a more detailed version of this style. Again, when I looked the Golden Age of Illustration up, I was amazed with the detailed drawings. Of course, it's very different to make 10-20 drawings than it is to make probably hundreds, for a complete videogame. Still, since it's Ubisoft we're talking about, maybe the idea will be pursued further! The animation also has some really nice details to it! Not unlike Disney or Ghibli's movies, the best part of it is how they animate the little details and creatures that populate the universe. Unfortunately, the enemies weren't nearly as fluid and charismatic. Not sure if it was to reinforce the hand-made feeling of the game or not, but it would have been better to flesh those out a bit more. The backgrounds, though, are full of live, with little creatures constantly popping up. Very nice art direction, overall! The Music was mostly awesome! Honestly, it evoked similar feelings as Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons did. It has calm moments, composed only with a cello and a piano or a flute, on top of the ambience sounds, and it's great! Besides, there are some musician characters around the world, who play their instruments in tune with the background music -- which I always love! Even the main character plays a flute, at times, making some of the melodies very memorable! The biggest problem, for me, is how grand ideas always seem to fall into the same pit: orchestrating their music. Seriously, it happens way to many times. Instead of the very organic and personal music with just a couple of instruments, the game sometimes feels the need to orchestrate everything. While it gives it a more "epic" feel, it's much more impersonal and generic, to me. This happens mostly in the battle tracks, but it was still rather underwhelming, to me. The soundtrack was composed by Coeur de Pirate. I didn't know of her music, and still don't like it very much. Regardless, she has done a brilliant job in here! The sound-effects didn't catch my attention. I'll take that as a positive, since I can be easily annoyed by them! General Structure & Mechanics The game has 2 main components: 2D platforming, where you explore the world and meet NPCs, and then the JRPG combat system. Neither of them are really noteworthy on their own, but everything in the games comes together rather well, creating a very solid overall experience. The game only has an overworld map, with the ability to fast-travel to previously seen locations. The adventure/exploration aspect of the game is mainly tied to exploring the landscape, finding Coffers with consumables, Attribute bonuses, and Confessions (which I'll explain later on). You get the ability to fly very early on, so platforming, per-se, isn't an issue, here. The maps are fairly open, with lots of (slightly) hidden areas for you to explore. However, the game's RPG side is very stream-lined, making most of the exploration pointless, most of the time. I still did explore, but the payout was very little, because of the combat. The encounters aren't random, as you can see every enemy. You can also avoid them, if you will. I'm assuming this could be fine if you were playing on Casual Mode ("For those in it just for the story"), but on Expert, you will need to fight the monsters to level up and face the Boss fights. There's no need to grind, and fighting the monsters you encounter normally should suffice. This is a good way of doing things, although Yahtzee has a good point: Is it worse when the game batters me with the boring stick, or when it puts the boring stick on the ground and leaves me to batter myself with it? Why is the combat streamlined? Well, for example, there's no equipment. Instead, each character has 3 Occuli slots, which are crystals that you can craft, each with a different effect. The 3 slots loosely stand for Weapon, Armor and Trinket. The crystal's effect in every character is the same, when used in the same slot. It's actually quite complicated to explain. And even more to discover their uses, since the interface for it is rather clunky. It was clearly made with a controller in mind, and is missing a lot of keyboard+mouse funcionalities. Each character has a "talent tree" with 3 branches, that give them access to different types of skills. You get skill points from leveling up. There's no re-specializing whatsoever, which can be annoying. If you get another character with the same skills you've already chosen in another character, it can be annoying to be stuck with a bunch of useless skills. Overall, though, it didn't prove to be a real issue. Combat dynamics are completely off For example, you have access to several potions, with stat changing effects (for X turns, in combat). These do exactly the same as characters' skills. So... why use potions? There's almost no reason to! With the exception of H/MP potions. Then, there's the fact that there's a "progress" bar, influenced by speed. When you reach the "Casting" part of the bar, you're set back, and your spell canceled, if you're hit. This adds strategy to the game, but you're often outnumbered (you have 2 characters, vs. 3 enemies). This gets you interrupt all the time, during Bosses. And it simply feels unfair! It's infuriating, at times, as you almost rendered useless. ... Then, there's also the fact that buffs don't last long at all, and with only 2 characters, you have to cumbersomely change between characters... it's effective, but very counter-intuitive, and makes the combat less enjoyable than it could have been. I'm already out of words. I didn't like the combat. However, I thoroughly enjoyed the overall experience! I think it dragged on a bit, especially with the sub-par combat. And for each of its faults, the game also had some nice little detail to make up for it! I enjoyed the world and the dialogue (which is all in rhyme -- didn't annoy me at all, I actually found it a nice little effort). It's a very nicely crafted experience, give it a go!


A unique handpainted rpg

nifeleki | June 16, 2015 | See all nifeleki's reviews »

Child of light is a unique rpg game developed by Ubisoft Montreal.Its built on the UbiArt Framework Engine decorated by a handpainting artstyle. The story follows a little princess Aurora as she wakes up on an altar in the mythical land of Lemuria. The visuals are great and the handpainted like environment and figures in combination with the music that really shines gives a brilliant outcome.The world of Lemuria is beautiful, gameplay is pleasing making the players want to explore the environment and find all the collectibles.The game breaths out a fairytale warmth and characters are speaking in rhymes making the experience more intense. Child of light includes exploration which is fun as Aurora have the ability to fly in this realm, puzzle solving and combat.The combat is turn based with real time elements.Attacking enemies while charging an attack force them to interrupt and put their move back in the timeline that is shown in the bottom center of the screen. Igniculus is a small blue ball of becomes the first companion of Aurora and helps her in fighting by blinding enemies and slowing their progress in the is also helps in finding mana from plants. Leveling up gives you one skill point that you can spend on the upgrading tree.The game provides 6-7 hours of gameplay.In the beginning the game may feel like a childish fairytale but as it progresses it takes a more dark and dreadful color.Its a unique creation of Ubisoft which i definitely recommend.


Absolutely amazing and a bit heart breaking

Stebsis | June 18, 2014 | See all Stebsis's reviews »

Child of Light tells coming of age story of princess Aurora, who is thought of being passed away. She ends up in kingdom of Lemuria, that is in bit of a disarray. At first the game seems like a childrens storybook, but it's much darker than what you'd expect, kind of like those old Grimm's fairy tales that you might've read. It doesn't mean it's not suitable for children, just like some old Grimm's story. I would actually recommend younger kids to play this because it does handle some mature themes but the way it's presented isn't inappropriate or gory Well I won't rhyme all of the review(not very good at it either). Though that is how the game's dialogue is presented, everything the characters say is rhymed like in some fairy tail. There is plenty of dialogue so if you're annoyed by rhyming this game probably isn't for you. The story, though short, is very well done. Aurora is seeking a way out of Lemuria. You must find the sun, the stars and the moon that've been stolen. Aurora also learns that her father is very ill after her passing away so she must hurry back. There are couple of very well done twists along the way and the story, though most part predictable, is very well written, characters are well made and you want to know what happens next even if you sort of guess the outcome. You meet lot of colorful characters along the way that you can use in battles. They're all very likeable, though not very fleshed out outside of their own, quite short, stories. Soon after you've arrived to Lemuria you learn to fly. You can fly around these fairly big areas, discover hidden treasures, some hidden bosses even. The world looks gorgeous, huge praise to artists who worked on this. Battle system works like old JRPG's, particularly like Grandia on PS1. There is action bar where you, one of your team-mates and the enemies are shown. The character icons move and when they reach the CAST part you get to choose what you want to do. There are a lot of interesting mechanics at play here, particularly the delay part. If you attack your enemy when they're casting, you delay them and push them back in the action bar, but this also works on your characters. You have to strategize when you actually want to attack to get most out of it. Some talents take a long time to cast and you need to learn when you can delay and when to defend that raises your defence for a turn, you won't attack but you move much faster on your second turn. When you level up you can choose talents for Aurora and other characters. They all have their uses, Finn is good at magic and is best against elemental foes, Rubella is mostly healer and fairly good at attacking and Norah is great at delaying enemies a bit. The combat is pretty hard in the hardest difficulty, I didn't try lower ones so I can't say how easy they are. You really need to use what you have effectively. I died many times, especially in boss battles that require lot of thought to get through. I really enjoyed the difficulty though. There are some puzzle elements, though they never were really challenging. Usually it's just flip switch to open door, push crate on top of switch or try to get to door before it closes. Also need to mention the soundtrack composed by Coeur de Pirate. It's really, really good. The battle music, all the traveling music etc. are some of the best I've ever heard in a video game, almost rivaling Nobuo Uematsu. I really hope she does more music to games. Child of Light is one of Ubisoft's greatest games I think, and they've had some amazing stuff over the years. Only real major gripe I have is that it's way too short, I really wanted to play this much, much more but grinding levels at the end isn't really what Child of Light is best at


An astounding, good, mini rpg game

tom_solo | April 30, 2014 | See all tom_solo's reviews »

A charming story, excellent, artisting graphics and very good music. The controls, and gui is close to perfect, and the gameplay is very relaxing with some tactical/puzzle elements. Maybe the 'normal' difficulty is too easy - ideal for casual gamers - but it's really enjoyable for both parents and children. Recommended.