I recently got to play an unusual game called the Land of Lamia. The game is an eerie, puzzle based game set in a dream like world.
The game is about two young children, with massive hands for some reason, who wake up in what at first seems to be their bedroom. As the camera zooms out it reveals that in fact their bedroom is situated in an odd, dream like world. The world around them is dark, creepy and very unsettling. The children are Lily and Thomas, brother and sister, and awake confused and scared. They begin to realize that they are in a place known as Gimbles Maze. Gimbles Maze is just a story from the Book of Lamia. Lily picks up the book from the bedroom and we get to read the first part of the book. This first part of the book shows an illustration about that basic controls you will be using in the game. I liked this approach to introducing the gameplay controls and movement. You then set off on your journey with Lily and Thomas, not really knowing what is going on or what lies ahead.
The gameplay in Land of Lamia is tricky to get used to at first and took me some practice. The game may look simple enough, but controlling the two characters proved challenging. You have to move Lily and Thomas at the same time. There is a set path layed out in front of you that you must follow, which winds around in various directions. What makes moving the characters tricky though is the fact that they move at different speeds. Lily moves much faster, but if you hold down the shift button Thomas will run faster than her. You also have the ability to jump with the space bar. If you press shift and space, then Thomas will jump far ahead. The idea is to navigate the world and try to keep the two characters close together. If you fail to keep the two characters on the path you slowly turn to stone, and are put back at the start of the maze.
Lily will carry the Book of Lamia around with her on their journey. The game is very hard at times and some of the puzzles are very challenging, along with tricky movement controls. The book will give you tips and hints along the way, which are very useful and much-needed. You also use the book as a map that can help guide you through the world. What I really liked about the game was the eerie tone and unsettling atmosphere. The world is extremely dangerous, like I said if you step of the path you will turn to stone. Also after a while into your journey a dark ominous cloud appears at the start and begins to follow you. When you have finally managed to navigate the path, which took me some time, you will continue into the next section. There is a forest with a tower. There is gate known as The Gate of Lamia. This is where you are presented with a riddle that you must solve in order to continue. The Book of Lamia will help you solve the riddle, but again it proved challenging. The game then moves on and more challenges and puzzles arise. I don’t want to give too much away, but I will say that it’s a game that has some interesting challenges and puzzles.
My favourite part of the game was the presentation. The world is dark, creepy and has an absorbing atmosphere. I really liked how you have no idea why you are in this place and where you are heading. The challenges presented in the game are thoughtful and at times very difficult. The music and sound design also works very well within the game. There is a piano that plays music in the background that feels ominous and unsettling. The world feels dream like and has a murky style that I enjoyed. The game did frustrate me at times, and the camera was sometimes obstructed by objects in the way.
Overall I enjoyed Land of Lamia and thought it was a unique experience. The world is well thought out and designed. I enjoyed the puzzles, although tricky at times, and was always intrigued to find out where I was heading. If you fancy a game with a strong sense of style, unique controls and interesting puzzles then I recommend you give this game a go.
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