Well it’s a lonely planet joy
What do you get when you combine Flappy Bird, Super Meat Boy, and Trials? A space rock. Not just any space rock, but several space rocks looking to keep a Lonely Sun company. Lonely Sun is a platformer that utilizes physics and gravity, much like you will when you throw your phone in response to the difficulty.
Playing Lonely Sun is simple. Swipe your finger in the direction you’d like to float your space rock. Guide the rock from left to right and don’t touch any feature that’s yellow. There are five planets to get into orbit and three levels per planet. Every planet features a different type of element as well as a different feeling of gravity. The graphics and sound are stunning, especially for a mobile game. It’s mostly just colored space rocks and weather set to the soundtrack of dark ambience, but it works well.
Having each planet signify a different amount of gravity as well as other features like wind and black holes keeps things interesting.
It’s worth noting that the water planet was my favorite in the game. The level designs were more laid back, the floatiness of the control scheme felt good, and the music was relaxing, thus marking the first time in the history of gaming where the water level was the best level.
Logically, most platformers will increase their difficulty level by level. Not in Lonely Sun, however. I promise you if you can complete the first level you are more than capable of beating every level in the game. I don’t know if it was the incredible amount of practice or that the game was designed this way, but every level from there on out felt possible. For the first 20-100 tries I honestly thought I’d never pass the first level. This lays great groundwork for each subsequent success. Sure, the levels felt easier, but I always had the lingering fear I’d get stuck.
Finishing the game was satisfying, but there isn’t any reason to go back. The game relies on the classic tropes of challenging platforming, especially practice and memorization. Lonely Sun is a speedrunners dream. It seems obvious this game would feature a timer. Unfortunately, once you finish all the levels there’s nothing else. The 15 levels aren’t easy, however, and they’ll keep you busy for a considerable amount of time.
There isn’t a ton of content, but the game is only a couple bucks. There are some simple features that would bolster the game’s score, but what’s here is a solid package. I urge folks to try to and push past the first level. If you like difficult yet addicting platformers it’s hard not to recommend a game that costs as much as a soda, but be warned, that price goes up if you end up smashing your screen.
Final Verdict: 4/5
Available on: iOS (reviewed) ; Publisher: Rinikulous Games ; Developer: Rinikulous Games ; Players: 1 ; Released: September 22, 2016 ; MSRP: $1.99
Full Disclosure: This review was based on a review copy of Lonely Sun provided by the publisher.