Lucidity is an inexpensive diversion that failed to really captivate us, despite its distinctive style and gameplay.
Lucidity is a quirky platform/puzzle game that, like Number None’s Braid, requires quick thinking as much as fast reflexes. The plot revolves around Sofi, a young girl who has slipped into a dream-like world following the death of her grandmother. This is a little darker than your standard platformer game, although its treatment is mawkishly sentimental at times.
The plot is backed up by hauntingly evocative music and distinctive graphics that look like a nightmare set in a child’s storybook. Sofi trots inexorably across the screen, oblivious to the dangers ahead of her. These include deadly pits, towering columns and enemies like sinister and surreal snails, mushrooms and stars.
You can’t control Sofi’s movements directly, but instead must place objects in her path to guide her safely through the level. Your arsenal consists of planks and stairs for Sofi to walk across, springs, catapults and fans to loft her into the air and bombs to destroy enemies and obstacles. You get one object at a time, in random order. The next is displayed in a box at the top right of the screen and you can save a piece to use later in a box to the left – it’s worth hanging onto bombs in particular.
Later levels ramp up the challenge, with more enemies and increasingly labyrinthine layouts of platforms, pits and walls. As you progress, you’ll not only have to protect Sofi from the dangers that lie before her, but also keep ahead of the consuming darkness that follows hot on her heels.
Although the plot and game mechanics are refreshingly original, levels are repetitive and the gameplay consists of endless crisis management. We got a sense of satisfaction when we finally got past a fiddly level that had been frustrating us, but you rarely have time to savour the pleasure of putting together a really clever sequence of objects. At just £7, Lucidity is cheap to buy and fun to dip into, but not as captivating as we’d hoped.