Well, Ori and the Blind Forest is absolutely gorgeous! The “Prologue” segment was emotionally impacting as well.
What makes Ori and the Blind Forest so special is its presentation. Unveiling a world which is dark in colour scheme yet much lighter in tone, this game is a candidate for the prettiest 2D platformer of all time. When us grumpy old folk complain that the mainstream of 2D gaming ended a generation or two too early, this game is exactly what we are talking about. Not only is there a dense, borderline obsessive amount of detail to the world, but all this is backed up by extremely fluid animation.
Unfortunately, I fear it is too difficult for me. I got to a stage that I just couldn’t get past. I set the difficulty down to “Easy”, but I believe it was my platforming skills that were lacking, something the difficulty settings couldn’t really help me with. I had played for over an hour, so created a save point and took a break. Unfortunately, when I returned to the demo I didn’t see an option to return to my save point, I suspect that perhaps that’s a function that is available once the full game is unlocked?
I’m left wondering if perhaps I missed a “Metroidvania” ability that I needed to acquire in order to progress, or if it is indeed my lack of skill that defeated my progress? It’s an enchanting game, and I’m tempted to buy the full game, but if I’m honest with myself it’s likely that the demo showed me that it’s a fantastic game that is slightly outside my level of skill, alas.
From start to finish, Ori and the Blind Forest is a real joy to play. Challenging yet never feeling unfair or discouraging, and almost relaxing to control. The mesmerising art style and musical score are the icing on the cake that makes the player actually care about the protagonist and want to keep playing to the game’s conclusion.
Ori And The Blind Forest: Definitive Edition Review
I do recommend others give the Switch demo a try! I’ve got so many games in my backlog that I think I’ll let this one simmer a bit before I decide whether to buy it and try to persevere past the sections that exceed my skill level.
I was glad to see that the Switch port is excellent, in fact the game director stated that:
Keep in mind that we’ve been working with our engine for a good 10 years now and went through multiple releases and a sequel now. A lot of the optimizations we did for Will of the Wisps ended up in the Blind Forest version for Switch, so that was a nice side-effect.
Another thing people maybe don’t notice immediately is that Ori’s sprites were animated at 30fps on Xbox/PC, but for Switch we were actually able to update the animations to 60fps due to all the optimizations, so technically Ori actually even animates a bit smoother on Switch than on the other platforms
Ori And The Blind Forest “Animates A Bit Smoother” On Nintendo Switch