Have you ever wanted to help your child through a magical fantasy adventure? Of course you have! And you’re in luck, because that’s exactly what Child of Light wants to offer you.
Astoundingly, Child of Light came from not just the same developer, but from the same core creative team responsible for Far Cry 3, also known as Exotic Animal Murder Island. Gone are the Komodo dragons, flamethrowers, and confused moral parables regarding adventure tourism. Instead, we have a story about a princess fallen into a land of dreams and death, and her struggle to get home.
You play as either Aurora or her faerie spirit friend, Igniculus. Though she may be a princess, Aurora isn’t waiting for anyone to come and save her. In the first five minutes of the game, she picks up a broadsword and puts it to work battling the various nightmare creatures that haunt this fairytale realm. When not jumping through the scenery, Aurora’s player will experience a traditional kind of turn-based combat, during which she can choose between spells and swings of her blade.
Igniculus, the little glowing dewdrop that follows Aurora around, is her guide, familiar, and friend. He can illuminate places too dark for Aurora to see. He can also blind enemies so she can sneak by unscathed. In combat, Igniculus is mainly responsible for controlling the flow of battle. By shining in an enemy’s eyes, Igniculus can slow down their approaching turn. If the pair of you work together, Aurora can interrupt her foes before they get a chance to attack. It’s a system of surprising complexity, especially on Expert difficulty.
Child of Light is not only a beautiful game, it’s a game that has honed its aesthetic to a razor edge. The game looks and sounds like a children’s storybook. The graphics seem to be watercolored and the dialogue is told in alternating rhymes. The story is powerfully archetypal: a girl far from home, trying to get back to her family. Even the twists and turns of the plot are resonant with the trials of childhood.
Available on PC and all major gaming consoles, Child of Light may be told like a bedtime story, but it’s enchanting for parents and kids alike.