Felix the Reaper, a 3D adventure shadow puzzler where you must manipulate the shadows to move through the light. Created by Kong Orange this is the third game in their arsenal. This title has Felix the Reaper, who works for the Ministry of Death, change his desk job to venture into field work. This job change isn’t for money or power, oh no, Felix hopes that the move will help him meet his true love, the rather voluptuous Betty the Maiden who works for the Ministry of Life. A Reaper from the dark trying to date a Maiden from the light will never work they all say, can Felix prove all the naysayers wrong?
The hero is no ordinary reaper, with every move he makes he feels the beat and the energy of the music that surrounds him. This unusual being can’t help but give in to his urges as he dances at every opportunity. This may be considered quite inappropriate for the grim reaper to literally dance on your grave, but who are you going to complain to when he comes to collect you. The quirky nature of Felix’s desire to dance his way through life is overlooked by his employers, as long as he gets the job done. Felix can be found dancing his way through every level to the rather tasteful and unique soundtrack that adds a fun and unusual flair to this game.
The bold and distinctive narrative throughout the cinematic fills the player with hope that this will be a light-hearted comical affair. In reality the narrative is a bandage holding the game together, as the story unfolds, it is slowly falling away highlighting the games many shortcomings.
Graphically, the developers have created levels which draw the player to want to explore and absorb the environment, unfortunately the time driven demands of the game forces you to focus centrally on the task at hand. For all the beauty of the dark levels when you look on close inspection you notice how rough it is around the edges. Walkways are not defined, causing moves to be made unnecessarily. This impacts on the mission, causing you to fail the level, and finally predictable frustrations.
The games rather macabre cinematic is clear and oddly entertaining, unfortunately the lack of description of the task at hand can leave you confused and grasping at air as you stumble from task to task hoping to be on the right track. Each level clearly highlights the end goal, but it fails to explain the requirements to achieve perfection on the stage.
A speed run game that leaves very little error for margin. Make one false move and it’s a classic “Control, Alt, Delete” reset, take a breath and start again. I admit to several yelps of frustration, not due to player error, but due to control and movement failure. Highlight an area to place an item, and the limited camera angle will place it in the wrong place. Another yelp of despair, another deep breath, and start again. I used both mouse and controller to play, neither was superior to the other, and both caused issues.
The concept of light and dark to traverse each level was well thought out, and made each puzzle a challenge. Items found in each level placed in key areas extend the paths of darkness, and the clever system of the sundial and its 90 degree rotation made you think about every move.
I love the puzzle genre and having watched the game play trailer I couldn’t wait to play this, new in game pass, Indie title. The opening hold your hand tutorial level sucked me in beautifully, unfortunately this love affair had grown cold before its time. The lack of guidance, and unknown aims left me stabbing around in the dark. Try, try, and try again, eventually you will finish the level only to be confronted with 3 unknown targets that you are likely to have failed. So another yelp of frustration, another deep breath and hit reset and try again. This unknown element will gift the most hardcore of gamers the replayability factor that will reward them with a sense of achievement, but for me the constant feeling of failure was enough to put me off.
The developers have spent so long making the environment enthralling, the soundtrack entertaining, and the characters memorable that they had forgotten that people want to play the game for the enjoyment factor, not some twisted desire to beat a level no matter the cost. The grind and disappointment is hard to hide from. I really wanted this game to live up to the trailer, and the potential it had created. Unfortunately for me it has missed the mark. Can I suggest this game to others, unfortunately I don’t think I can. For all the great elements, it has far too many holding it back, unless you like to be punished and frustrated whilst playing your games I would say give this puzzler a miss.
REVIEW CODE: A complimentary PC code was provided to Bonus Stage for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to email@example.com.
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Felix The Reaper Review
Gameplay - 5/10
Graphics - 6/10
Sound - 7/10
Replay Value - 5/10
A comical, but challenging puzzle game where the Reaper will literally dance on your grave.
Great sound track.
Extremely challenging puzzles with limited guidance.
Limited view of game area causes unnecessary frustrations.