Thursday, July 11, 2019

Parkour! || Stumblehill (PC)


You don’t just stumble into the future. You create your own future.” -Roger Smith

Title

Stumblehill is an adorable, if frustration inducing, platformer adventure created by Hempuli. You play as a penguin named Ecki who wakes up alone in his nest and begins a journey to the tallest mountain. Ecki travels through fields, caves, windmills and faces all kinds of danger to reach his destination, but Ecki’s biggest danger is you.

The controls are the biggest obstacle in this game, and I struggled to get through. There are times where you have to be more precise in your jumps and the way poor Ecki stumbles, rotates in the air or launches himself off cliffs even can result in a lot of trial and error to get through some areas. Admittedly, platformers are not really my strong suit. I did appreciate the amount of checkpoint flags that were provided, so that if you fall a long way or get stuck you can just hit “Z” and restart at the last flag you touched.

I love the windmills

The art style for this game is adorable. Ecki is the cutest penguin I have ever seen, and despite the times I sighed in exasperation and resented him, I still wanted to give him a hug. The environments are vibrant, the colors are beautiful, and the levels are well crafted and thoughtfully put together. The Windmill area was my favorite, I think, although the caves were really beautiful as well.

The music was relaxing and enjoyable, and the sound effects were fitting, even if I got sick of hearing Ecki fall on the ground (I guess I just shouldn’t have fallen so much). Poor Ecki cries every time he gets up after he falls, the poor guy. He was crying the whole adventure for me, but he made it!

My daughter was sitting with me while I played through some of the levels. There are signs that sort of show a picture and a key as a helpful aide for controls. Though, they weren’t always clear what was being asked of us, so my daughter interjected, “I don’t understand SIGN language (paused for laugh).” There is a way to check the controls on the opening screen of the game, so it wasn’t hard to figure the controls out, but I wanted to share that story anyway because I love my daughter and it was cute.

Ecki continues on...

Over all I enjoyed the adventure. There were times I got frustrated, but thanks to the abundance of checkpoints I never had to redo a large amount of work to get back to where I was. The game isn’t long either, so it doesn’t become repetitive or boring. You can check the game out for yourself, it’s free from Itch.io HERE. Be sure to leave some feedback for Hempuli and let them know how you liked it.

As always, thank you for stopping in today. Have you played games where the controls are purposely(or unintentionally) frustrating? Do you think a little penguin could really make such a long journey? Let me know what you thought in the comments below. Have a great day everyone, see you next time!

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