Gryphon Gazette

Celeste Review

Luke B., Reporter

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Matt Makes Games has released another outstanding videogame! If you enjoyed their previous game, Towerfall Ascension, then you are in for a treat with the recently released, Celeste. A prototype for the game was first developed during a Game Jam in 48 hours, and was a difficult game with 30 levels (this prototype can be played if you find a secret computer in one of the levels in the finished game). The plot of the game starts simple. You play as a young woman named Madeline who hopes to climb Celeste Mountain. As you climb the mountain, you come across varied locations, quirky characters, and tough platforming challenges. Among these characters is an evil version of Madeline, who is a physical manifestation of the her deepest, darkest, worst, traits. As she struggles to climb the mountain, she must also struggle with the other part of her trying to prevent her from reaching her end goal. The only way for Madeline to succeed is if she embraces the other part of her, instead of trying to shove her aside and ignore her, so they can work together to reach the peak of Celeste Mountain.

 

Although the gameplay is simple, it is used in so many fascinating ways that each level feels fresh and exciting. Madeline can walk, jump, and use a mid-air dash. Each level has a fun new mechanic to introduce as well, such as bubbles that give you an extra boost, and blocks that slide around and fling you across gaps. These mechanics don’t ever feel gimmick-y, overused, or underused. These mechanics (usually) only stay in the levels they are introduced in, but this is not a problem as each level is very lengthy (but not too long). These different mechanics help define each level, and make them more memorable. Each level is also filled with collectible strawberries, as well as a hidden VHS tape which unlocks the b-side of the level, which is a much harder variation of it, which upon completion rewards you with a heart. Hearts can also be found in secret areas of the levels, which makes the exploration of the vast, beautiful mountain very rewarding. Collecting four of these hearts will unlock a special bonus level. The pixelated art is extremely well done, and the music is beautifully composed. These aspects really set the mood for each level, which makes the game all the more atmospheric.

I don’t want to spoil too much in terms of story or gameplay, so it would be best if you bought the game and saw for yourself, as it’s only $20 (compared to the $60 price of games by big game companies), and isn’t that long (or at least it’ll seem that way because it’s hard to put down). I love this game, and the many collectibles and secrets to find make this game a blast even when the main story is finished. So far, this is my favorite game this year, and I don’t think any other upcoming games could be able to top it. The tough but refreshing platforming challenges mixed in with the impactful story and memorable locations and characters makes this game a perfect 10/10.

 

1 Comment

One Response to “Celeste Review”

  1. Luke G on February 13th, 2018 9:23 am

    Great review.

    [Reply]

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