The platforming genre is home to some of my favorite games of all time. As a child, hours were spent playing games like Donkey Kong Country, Banjo Kazooie, Super Mario Bros, Crash Bandicoot, and Sonic The Hedgehog among others. Not only were these games great to look at, the characters were memorable, the levels were vibrant, and the gameplay was fun. Over the past few years, the platforming genre has been rather scarce. Though Sony released Ratchet & Clank earlier this year and Yooka-Laylee is set to launch next year, there aren’t that many titles in the genre currently on the market.
This is one of the many reasons why Skylar & Plux Adventure On Clover Island is such a refreshing experience. It’s a game that is clearly inspired by games of the past, but has enough flair to differentiate itself from what is currently offered on the Xbox One. If you’ve played a platform game before, then Skylar & Plux will seem very familiar, but the visual aesthetic and exploration elements are definitely what kept me hooked throughout the whole demo.
I was shown a desert level in my hands-on with the game. Skylar, a cat-like heroine used attacks on enemies while she jumped and hovered to reach different platforms. While the end goal is pretty obvious, Skylar and Plux encourages players to branch out and see what the world has to offer. There are various collectibles to be found in various secret areas. Usually when there is a fork in the road, chances are that you should explore both paths.
There are various items found in the game that will help players understand the lore found within Skylar and Plux. The desert level that I played was overflowing with sand and various cactus type trees. When interacting with specific items (which reverses time), we are able to see what everything was like before the main conflict in the game. The desert was once full of life and springs of water. It looked vibrant and beautiful, but that was no longer the case. During my hands-on session with the game, reversing time also opened up a new area that helped me find a collectible. When the demo ended, I didn’t find all of the collectibles. I was told that there were two that I missed. After hearing this piece of information, all I wanted to do was play through the demo again to find the missing items.
Right Nice Games is getting ready to unleash Skylar & Plux sometime next year. The team consists of five Swedish students that are working on their first game. So far, everything that I have seen in Skylar & Plux Adventure On Clover Island looks great. The visuals are appealing, the gameplay is fun (although not always original), and there is an emphasis on exploration and building lore revolving around the game’s universe. While we don’t know how the end product will turn out, after my hands-on time with the game, I’m optimistic that gamers will be in for a treat next year.