Completed the game

This is a short indie platformer where you play as a candle with legs, aka. Candleman. Your task is to traverse a series of levels which is a pure platforming challenge. You jump from platform to platform and sometimes you need to avoid certain dangers, but you have no real offensive actions. This game is mostly about running, jumping and lighting up the dark.

This game is very dark, and darkness puzzles is one of its main mechanics. Most of the time you see next to nothing, not even the ground you stand on, and not at all the platform you’re going to jump to. What you can do to battle the dark is to light your candle, but your candle burns very fast and once it burns out you are dead. This leads to lighting your candle in sort bursts to get a view of you surroundings and then try to remember the terrain in the dark.

This could be totally awful, but it works. When you light your candle you will drip and leave spots on the ground that are also visible in the dark. And sometimes you come across candles that you can set alight. This means that when you die you will have an easier time to get back to where you were. The checkpoints are pretty generous even when the levels themselves are no more than 10 minutes long.

I don’t like darkness in games. I hate those puzzles. I hated the dark parts of Owlboy. Mostly it’s because I stare at my own ugly face in the reflection of the screen. I can’t figure out if I can’t see because the game doesn’t want me too or because everything in my room reflects on the surface of the TV or Switch screen. It makes me squint and playing the game becomes a struggle.

This game is one long dark puzzle. From someone that doesn’t like that sort of thing I think this works pretty well. The game mostly give you enough hints in the darkness and your progress is always rewarded. I never got irritated by the darkness, but I did get frustrated by the controls where I thought I did the right thing but died anyway.

This game is not long. I finished it in 4 sittings. The story is a waste of space. It didn’t connect with me at all. It felt slapped on top of a cool darkness mechanic and they felt they had to give it context. The story also have a fake ending, which I really hate. After that I looked up how many chapters there were because I can’t stand fake endings.

All in all it was a cute little platformer that was worth the time I spent on it.

My rating: 3