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Okay, so I played Gelda.

I admit, Hilda have been on my watch/read list for a very long time, and I still haven’t crossed it off. I am absolutely in love with it’s visual style, and Gelda plays into it amazingly. I will play the hell out of it, if it ever becomes a full-length game (assuming everything else is polished).

This visual aesthetic is very consistent thoroughly the whole game, and besides a few clippings/tile gaps it is flawless (for a Jam). 

One thing that bugs me about visuals are the branches. They merge with the background and it’s kinda hard to distinguish them while running from a troll. They definitely should be more visually distinctive.

Gameplay. It’s nice, but it suffers sometimes from small bugs and inconsistencies. 

As others have said, the death seems too punishing. Delay between death and respawn could have been 2-4 times shorter. 

Game features a lot ‘leap of faith’ jumps. You jump blindly and hope the level design catches you. Granted, it does, but considering death delays, it feels very punishing to experiment with blind jumps. And I don’t mean only Mistfox jumps, even the regular in-level jumps often times require lots of faith into level design.

Then, you have these huge leaps with Abi. They seem very inconsistent. I know they are predictable, but because of how big the distance is, they feel ‘leap of faith-y’ as well. Flying through the whole level into the unknown basically. 

And to top all that, not all checkpoints are well-placed. Some require a bit of strolling until you reach the troll-sequence (which you’ve died at a few times already).

Conclusion:

Now, I make these downsides seem huge. They are a big deal, but everything good about the game really outshines them. But the experience can’t be whole with these things present, in my opinion.

You see, it seems like I rate this game as a standalone finished product at this point. Which I really shouldn’t. It’s a Jam entry made in a tight time limit. But I can’t help it, cause I really like it))

Wow, thank you for the very in-depth review of our game! We acknowledge that there are many small issues (and a few less minor issues) that we need to fix, and several things were discovered after we released the game for the jam. We have every intention to fix all the issues that have been pointed out, and add quite a bit more content for the player to consume. There will be more environments, creatures, and things to do overall in the game. New mechanics, and minigames to break up the gameplay.

We started working on the game after the jam started, and the levels were designed within only 2 days. We had little time to fully-test everything, and knowing the level design, we didn't end up with as much of an issue of leap-of-faith because we knew what was coming up. That was a miss on our part.

Thank you again for playing, and for taking the time to write up a detailed review.

Today we are unleashing an update to Gelda with a bunch of fixes that we hope you will like.

  • Abi is not based on velocity anymore and works more like a double-jump
  • Gelda can now let go of Abi while gliding
  • Text boxes now are destroyed correctly
  • Troll disappears when you get far enough away so you are not stuck/trapped anymore
  • Gelda can now duck to look down to avoid leaps-of-faith
  • Checkpoints now work correctly and do not activate before being reached
  • Fixed collision issues in the Misty Wood - 2 level
  • Reduced death/respawn sequence time
  • Reduced time for level name screen for faster play
  • Added option to quit to title during playing via the pause menu (press ESC to pause)
  • Cleaned up major graphics splicing issues
  • Optimized rendering and collision checking to reduce lag

Please give the updated game a whirl and let us know your thoughts.