This is a good example of level design. The creator starts of with a sense of ambiance with the use of rain, house-like structures, a good variety of terrain and ropes. This level very much feels like a place. Why you would live somewhere where Kromblers keep banging on the roof, well that is not for us to ever know.
We see early on in the level a gentle escalation of difficulty. The first battery is highlighted on a pedestal, but that pedestal also protects any new players from the vacrat to the left of it.
We see this escalation is well with the elevators, which use a variety of mechanisms. The first one using a level is smart because it forces the user to focus on it, it make new players feel smart and it slows down the initial pacing.
The second floor is more challenging but still doable. I appreciated the implicit pause point shown below, as well as the use of checkpoints overall.
On the third floor, I feel a bit mixed about the puzzle with the blopfush. It works overall, but I could see someone jumping straight into the fray and then realizing too late they need to do a package jump right after. I very much appreciated the portal at the bottom of the level that brings you back to this floor. I fell down the once and was quite grateful I didn’t have to do things over or force a respawn. This was a very thoughtful touch.
The last floor was quite challenging, but it was short enough that you could brute force it and rely on lucky timing. I appreciated that aspect. Finally, I enjoyed the fact that there were some hidden areas and bonus jems.
5pcwrz8 | “Flingo On To Whizblade” by Yucca @krkxsl | Beginner-Friendly, Simple
This level follows the design axiom of “More Whizblades equals more better.” This creator does a good job of providing escalating difficulty and variety in challenges. This level almost could use more checkpoints. A spent a bit of time repeating work but never so much that it go frustrating or overwhelming.
I think a smidge more variety in terrain and use of backdrop might have helped out the aesthetic a bit. I also would have loved to see more Jems and optional challenges. I enjoyed the linear focus, but it would have been nice to be able to compete on the score leaderboards, and currently there just aren’t enough jems to do that.
This level is definitely an improvement over the creator’s previous level. The Flipwips surprised me the first time because I didn’t realize the columns were walkable and therefore I wasn’t on high alert. The creator does a good job of segmenting the level into different sections and providing checkpoints.
I appreciated the bonus jems because it allowed me to pursue the highest score even if I couldn’t get the best time. I think the cloud section provided a good sense of escalating difficulty without being punishing for new players. I’ll be interested to see this creator produce more intricate levels, I see a nice metroidvania style level in their future.
9hgthtj | “Escape The Secret Temple!” by The Red Brick @xqsnmf | Simple, Beginner-Friendly, Well-Paced
A great first level by The Red Brick. The design is visually coherent, and I like the escalation in difficulty. I also appreciate the gating of content into individual rooms. I appreciate the optional jems, and the consistent checkpoints.
My main piece of advice is I would have loved to see a bit more difficulty, despite being a beginner friendly level. This could be done via more rooms, more difficult jems, hidden areas etc. this allows for a level to cater well to multiple audiences.
Overall, I enjoyed this level. I liked that each room had a different aesthetic, that was a really nice touch. I enjoyed that the levels got more difficult as you went, and the fact that the last level was much larger and more intricate. I especially enjoyed the music change near the end. It felt a bit like a boss room. I enjoyed the jems taunting the player throughout the level, like a hard mode of some sort.
The level creator was generous with the checkpoints, by providing infinite checkpoints in the central area. Still, I might have liked one int he third room since I spent probably 8 minutes alone on that room. Especially frustrating is that I beat that room, but investigated the arrows and the hidden area and got myself killed in short order. It took me probably a dozen tries to beat it again. I really enjoyed the clouds acting as a brief chance to catch your breath while you were falling.
My one other bit of advice is that the second room felt like a missed opportunity with the burny whirlers being static. Turning them into a dynamic movement puzzle could have been a great way to add some variety and to bridge the difficulties between rooms one and three more smoothly.
Overall an enjoyable level, and I look forward to see what else the creator makes.