A Matter of Light and Death

Review by Adam Ray

My efforts away from this website have done absolute wonders. It's given me a real chance to flex my creative muscles in a way other than writing. Video editing has always been something I've been interested in, as part of my long history as a person with eyes in the 21st century. It's near impossible to go a day without watching a piece of media that hasn't been heavily edited. Even in ways most people don't realise. It's an interesting way to tell a story, by taking something far longer and narrowing down everything the producer has seen into what the audience needs to see.

That said, the game I'm talking about today, the one that I've put just over an hour's worth of footage onto YouTube, required very little editing.

The Valve classic Portal, captured imaginations and set the tone for what first person games could be. Something other than blasting at foes. The unmistakeably better Portal 2 took expectations and blasted them off into deep space. With that said, I really don't think anything other than this or Mirror's Edge has done anything better than this, with this kind of format.

Lightmatter is a sudden but welcome delight. Well over a year old now, Lightmatter brings a unique solving mechanic to the first person, puzzle platformer.

The character you interact with most, Virgil the passive-aggressive scientist who runs the place, sums up the level design very well. “Think the floor is lava, but with shadows.” Moving the lights keeps you safe, by turning the black lava to much less unsafe floor space.

The quality of the challenge is far higher than you would expect. With walls that change upon pressing big red buttons, the placement of panels which absorbs light.

Conclusion

The consistent crawl is always good in most games, but this unique puzzle dynamic is engaging and handled so very well. I'm yet to finish it, but I have utmost confidence in the detailed level and increasing, but manageable difficulty slope to make this one an instant classic.

For anyone who wants to see me in action, you can find me playing right here on The Hostile Atmosphere YouTube Channel.

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