Song of the Firefly is pitched as a story-driven exploration platformer following a boy named Sam on his quest to find a missing friend. Oh, and the world has ended. That’s a pretty important thing to include, too. It’s a 3D side-scroller (2.5D, technically) with a gloomy art style and shadow creatures that are very reminiscent of the dark antagonists in Ico. The three-man team known as Arpeggio Games hope to raise at least £8,000 to finish the game, and they’ve raised almost an eight of that already. This relaunched campaign is just getting started, too, so they still have the better part of a month to reach their new goal, which has been toned down from their original £15,000 target.
My thoughts? Nothing in the project’s pitch video strikes me as particularly original, and the gameplay looks a little janky, but this is all pre-funding, so I’m not going to bash the game too hard for being a little rough around the edges. It’s clear that a lot of work has gone into the game, already. I just hope it has something more creative to offer than back-and-forth wall-jumping. I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve seen that in side-scrolling platformers lately. The narrative already sounds fairly forgettable, too, which, ideally, isn’t something you want in a story-driven game. I really don’t like the green-haired protagonist’s apperance, either. It reeks of cheap mid-nineties animation.
Criticisms aside, I do feel like Song of the Firefly has some potential buried deep within, but from what I’ve seen so far, there’s nothing here that would convince me to actually back the project. That said, Arpeggio have clearly learned a few lessons from their previous campaign, having detailed exactly how this more modest budget would be spent. Who doesn’t love a pie chart?
Track the progress of the Song of the Firefly Kickstarter in our Campaign Calendar.