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12 Aug 2023

REVIEW: Spectrolite on Xbox

Review by Jon Donnis
Spectrolite offers a fresh and distinctive approach to first-person platformers, delivering a blend of immersive atmospheric levels and adrenaline-pumping timed challenges. The game introduces reimagined traditional platforming mechanics, enhanced with powerful abilities that bring a new level of precision to the genre.

Players will appreciate the expansive hand-crafted levels, each thoughtfully designed with diverse environments and accompanied by an original soundtrack that complements the gameplay experience. Additionally, the game's tight and precise controls ensure a responsive and smooth gameplay feel.

For those seeking an extra thrill, Spectrolite presents bite-sized time trials that provide an opportunity to compete globally on leaderboards. Players can measure their skills against others and strive to improve their personal records in this mode.

One standout feature of the game is the incorporation of ghost data from other players' speedrunning challenges. By observing these ghost runs, players can learn from mistakes and master each timed trial, enhancing the overall challenge and sense of achievement.

At its base this is a first-person platformer, get for the starting point to an end point, as fast as you can, and try not to die on the way. The game does its best to help guide you regarding the controls, but the first-person viewpoint is probably your biggest hindrance, which is a problem when that is the main point of the game.

The Good
Nice simple graphics, a strong sound track, and some well designed levels which present a decent challenge.

The Bad
As mentioned above the first-person viewpoint is a problem with precision platformers. This game I assume is out on VR? and would work well in that setting, but on a TV screen it struggles. The controls are a problem, the run and slide against a wall mechanic I simply couldn't get the hang over, when you fail 20 times at a simple jump, it becomes beyond frustrating, and left me looking at alternative ways to traverse the landscape. This is ok, but it totally takes you out of what should be a quick parkour type game. Instead of I walking slowly and carefully, trying to find the right spot to jump from, when in reality I should be zooming through the level.

The concept of the game is a good one, and in a VR setting this game should be great, but using a controller and playing it on a TV screen, the game ends up being more frustrating than fun.

A tweak in the controls, and fixing the wall slide mechanic, and I think my enjoyment of the game would increase massively.

I score Spectrolite a generous 7/10 in its current form.

Out Now on Xbox

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