In case you missed it, roguelite Eyes in the Dark: The Curious Case of One Victoria Bloom debuted last week. The game’s reveal part caught my attention thanks to its outstanding art direction and unique gameplay. I’ve spent the last few days battling the darkness as the iconic Victoria Bloom, a young girl who soon searches her ancestral home for her missing uncle after it was overtaken by dark monsters. via. Armed with a powerful flashlight, you will battle the living darkness in an ever-changing mansion, steeped in mystery and secrecy.
I’m enjoying the game, but it’s taking longer than I’d like to get used to its weird control scheme. Eyes in the Dark plays similarly to a two-bar shooter, with players using the left stick to move and the right stick to aim their auto-damaging flashlight beam. When your thumb is occupied, the jump is right. The left trigger fires a slingshot secondary weapon, and fires into the left bumper to do a dodge.
It’s an unorthodox setup that feels like head slapping and belly rubs, mostly because I’m conditioned to press a button on my face, namely A, to jump. That’s probably the best approach though, based on how the target works, but you’ll feel like you’re gripping the controller as you awkwardly jump through stages for several runs firstly. Even with everything in place, I still have moments where I want to treat the jump button like it’s activating a flashlight, making me jump around like an idiot.
Eyes in the Dark’s navigation and progression reminds me of the early years of roguelike renaissance, such as Issac’s Binding, or deeper our Darker Purpose. The player travels through sections of the house, such as the foyer, attic, or garden, each containing a mini-sized maze of shops, upgrade rooms, and boss battles, where keys will be issued. lock to unlock next area. Defeating enemies rewards Sparks, a currency used to buy upgrades for flashlights, slingshots, and maneuverability. These improvements reset after each run; to get permanent upgrades requires spending Knowledge, a resource accumulated after clearing an area, based on your achievements and performance.
If you’ve played roguelike in the last decade, Eyes in the Dark is pretty straightforward, making it easy to get into but also more repetitive. Fighting the same boss and re-running small areas lose their beauty after a few hours, and I’ve seen repeated instances of randomly arranged rooms. However, I’m still unlocking parts of the manor, so I haven’t seen every slot the game has to offer. Thankfully, Eyes in the Dark is easy on the eyes with its lovely, crisp black-and-white art style despite its limited color palette. The chiptune soundtrack, which has a funky feel, feels surprisingly well-suited to the Victorian-inspired setting.
In typical roguelite fashion, waving a flashlight to incinerate monsters and clear the fog of darkness feels solid but limited at first. The business will increase as you accumulate more upgrades. For example, equipping a flashlight with different bulbs will change the nature of the output. So far, I’ve equipped the bulb that produces a blob-like beam that slows the incoming projectile, a bulb that focuses the beam like a lamp saber and, on a similar note, a bulb that emits light on the opposite end to turn it into a Darth Maul-style two-bladed flashlight. In an imaginative flashlight game, I almost feel bad about saying that my favorite lightbulb by far is the one that quickly shoots out orbs of light like a machine gun. . But I love the shooter bulb, and something about the way it works reminds me vaguely of Cave Story’s primary weapon. That is a compliment.
Your slingshot acts as a limited-usage projectile weapon, preventing glowing projectiles that change based on what you’re equipped with. It’s a useful backup for crowd control, and my favorites include cherry bombs that stun targets and cannons that explode into smaller projectiles. Mobility upgrades include permanently useful double jumps, a warm-up that allows you to slow down and control your downhill (another good one), and many other general add-ons like speed boosts.
Unlock extra upgrade slots to make multiple upgrades that can turn Victoria into a hilarious dark terminator which is why I feel sad that she still lost everything after the end of the chapter first of the game. I assume this will be the case with each new chapter, making me dread having to constantly start over after working hard to assemble my ideal abilities.
Despite these shortcomings, I’m still finding it harder and harder to bring Eyes in the Dark down. It has a classic arcade charm in its design, and I felt the irresistible urge to start running after running, even if doing so meant suffering from the possibility of slowness. increase again. Sure, these games are my bread and butter, but I love the creative approach to combat. While it may be relatively simple, my artistically dodging blobs of darkness and deftly repelling monsters with my light makes me feel fulfilled and the challenge has enough appeal to keep me going. make the action engaging. I plan to stick with it and maybe find myself committed until I finally find my uncle slumbering in the shadows of Victoria.
Check out Eyes in the Dark if you’re in the middle of the big games and want a solid roguelite experience. Unfortunately, the game is only available on PC (both Steam and Epic Store). In particular, Eyes in the Dark will be a hit on the Switch, so Steam Deck owners will try to check if it’s playable on the device. I will continue hiking in the meantime and look forward to seeing if Victoria’s journey shines brighter.