Today we’re taking a look at Endlight‘s demo! This is an Arcade-style Flight game where you smash into stuff, collect hoops and you try to survive. It’s an interesting little title developed by Bigpants and in a way, it’s somewhat bizarre in what it’s promising you. In Endlight, you play as a little cube that goes through hundreds of procedurally generated levels on the hunt for hoops. You start off with 10 shields, collecting hoops awards you with an extra shield, and if you smash into objects, you lose shields. The game’s concept is relatively simple yet satisfying unless, of course, you have a problem with bright lights that switch on and off rapidly because… this game has a lot of those.
You see, the demo is free and the game’s fun but I’m a bit bothered by the fact that the game doesn’t have any sort of photosensitive epilepsy warning, especially with the many contrasts between dark and bright colours and the many bright lights that appear throughout the game, especially when you reach certain marks. If you don’t have an issue with that, however, it’s one hell of a trip for sure! It’s probably one of the trippiest auditive and visual experiences that I’ve played in recent years and I enjoyed it quite a lot while it lasted. There are different elements to the animation and the level design that are familiar yet unique, if that makes, partially because of the procedural generation. And I like the idea of it… it kind of reminded me of those Minecraft Adventure Maps called “The Drop” where you fall down and essentially try not to crash into various things.
Similarly, there are some First Person levels and others that put a different twist to things… and it’s fun but becomes rather annoying over time… That’s partially due to the weird controls. The first-person “highway” levels suck honestly as you can’t use your mouse but need to use your arrow keys to look around… which is not only weird and unintuitive but also never explained anywhere. Also, who uses the arrow keys for anything in games in 2021? Like, jeez. The controls in all the other levels feel clunky and weird and I hate how the devs just throw you into the game without a menu with sound/graphics/accessibility settings. I would have loved to turn the gamma settings down or to check/rebind the controls. Somehow the game doesn’t have that at all. Hitting Escape brings you to a level select menu, hitting it again closes the game. The controls are everything in flight games and this one… kinda sucks in that department? Like, a lot.
On another note, the developers are shipping the game with 100 levels “that cannot be replayed” on top of which every 2 months 25 more will be released for free… and then there’s also yearly challenges and a final challenge on Saturday, March 2nd, 2024. I’m not sure if the numbers add up though as the developers say that it’s 600+ levels in total when 25 x 6 x 3 = 450 levels… I mean, they’re releasing new levels six times a year (aka every two months) and that over three years… and the game only releases in November while the last challenge will be in March ’24, so technically there will be less unless they’re adding more levels in between… But it all sounds a bit weird and as this is just the demo anyway, I don’t know where the price point is exactly. The devs are trying this “reverse psychology” thing where they say that you will fail all challenges and where they say that you suck but the game is only interesting for so many minutes.
Don’t get me wrong, I found the demo quite enjoyable for 15 minutes but eventually, my eyes were exhausted, I got bored, and I ended up writing this post here. The levels are “hand-crafted” yet “procedurally generated”, which is kinda weirdly phrased. I hate that there’s no epilepsy warning or anything on the store page. The game’s marketing itself as “not a game, an assault”, which is very “SUS” as the youngsters say. I wanna like Endlight… but I really can’t recommend checking it out. I mean, do it if you want to. The demo can be found right here… but I wouldn’t bother with it past the demo personally or what do you think? Let me know!