The Curse of Talon Cyphyr is a collect-a-thon styled platformer where you play as a little dog named Talon and collect berries.
The game didn't feel too long or too short which is something that I always appreciate. It appeared to have five different levels to the best of my knowledge, with an intro room and a central hub.
The first thing that jumped out at me was the choice in the color palette. Rather than being monochrome, the developer decided to broaden the palette a little with purple and orange, giving it more of an early GameBoy Color vibe- and it looks nice.
The game plays with you going through each level collecting berries in order to activate an NPC who then opens a barrier in the level which allows you to collect some... stuff. When you pick up berries, you need to howl which turns them white and allows you to gather/eat them. I'm honestly not quite sold on this mechanic, as it tends to unnecessarily slow the game down. I think that having either howling or pressing down to collect the berries would be sufficient, rather than needing to do both which ends up feeling redundant. Perhaps some other uses for howling would alleviate that issue as well!
The sound overall is pretty good. The sounds are typical GameBoy sounds and the music is pretty enjoyable to have in the background. More variety in the music would be welcome, however. Since there is a stage or two that just continues playing the hub music, I suspect that the developer simply ran out of time or didn't have more music prepared which is to be expected in jams.
The player control feels a little rough around the edges and could benefit from a little more polish. Jumping essentially teleports you in the air rather that actually jumping you, and the jump itself could probably stand to be given a little more height. Nothing too aggravating but worth noting nonetheless.
Now, I'm not sure if there's an ending. I (at least I think I did) collected all the items, berries, and spoke to everyone. When nothing happened, I noticed that the levels reset themselves when you leave and renter along with all of their items. Of course I could have just missed something and if I did, I apologize.
I think the level design could use a bit more variety as the obstacles are pretty much the same through all the levels with the exception of water in the first level and the spikes in the last one. I understand this is because of the jam (I know I wanted my game to have more variety but such is how it goes), but with the future in mind some gimmicks would be interesting.
Overall I had fun with it. I think with some spit-shine, the game could be pretty interesting. It gives me a castlevania vibe from the aesthetic with some collect-a-thon style things going on, which is a good thing.
P.S. to the developer: Please don't take my criticisms too personally. I tend to critique much more easily than I compliment, so if the ratio of compliments to complaints is off, I apologize.
My game is Super Skater Kid.