Celeste (2018) - just another overrated indie game

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Retro STrife
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Re: Celeste (2018) - just another overrated indie game

Postby Retro STrife » June 4th, 2019, 4:28 pm

VideoGameCritic wrote:Brent brought this over today and while I admire the imaginative stage designs, this game is not for me. It's very masochistic, and while Brent could whiz through each stage with great skill, I find it nauseating just thinking about how much effort it would require to actually get that good.

He also showed me Cuphead which looked very creepy and wasn't very fun.


Both games might deserve a further look, but still, I'm glad you've joined the right side of the debate! In fairness to Celeste, it does a good job of easing you into the difficulty -- it never feels impossible like Cuphead -- but it is still way more tedious than fun. Now I wish you'd do a full review of Celeste, just so the internet can have a published review that calls out the game for how mediocre it truly is.

But I'm surprised to hear you say Cuphead is "very creepy" looking. I figured you'd appreciate the aesthetic -- it's really unique and the one thing the game really has going for it. Rip away the art style and Cuphead is mediocre at best, and probably below average if we're being honest. But that art style is really something special to see in a video game, and that alone makes it worth playing IMO.

P.S. Between the two, I'd take Celeste over Cuphead.

eneuman96
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Re: Celeste (2018) - just another overrated indie game

Postby eneuman96 » June 6th, 2019, 6:16 pm

As someone who absolutely loved Celeste, I'll agree to disagree, but I will say this part does confuse me:

Retro STrife wrote:
Celeste's level design is absolutely genius. This is the most expertly crafted 2D platformer I have ever experienced. Celeste trumps anything Nintendo or any other developer has done in 2D, and trumps it by a mile. In Celeste, you have only one move -- JUMP. And yet, the developers have taken that one move and used it to create endless platforming scenarios that gradually build upon each other. There is always something new; every room is a new puzzle to solve. The control is flawless -- every movement is fluid and effortless. Nothing ever feels cheap and the controls never betray you -- when you die (and you will die over and over and over), it is always your own fault. Beating some of the hardest levels, and especially getting the tougher strawberries and collectibles, is a real feat that gives you a sense of accomplishment that almost no other game has ever matched for me.


The level design is excellent, but the game itself isn't? You go on to say the game isn't all that fun, which seems to be a contradiction of what you say about the level design -- I wouldn't praise it that highly if I didn't enjoy playing through it, after all. Platformers live and die on their level design, so to say that having excellent levels does not equal an excellent platformer strikes me as odd, but at the end of the day it's your own opinion.

As for the story, your mileage may vary, but I think the developers did a good job of integrating it into the gameplay with its themes of overcoming seemingly insurmountable obstacles, as opposed to many other games even to this day where the story is just "there" and feels disconnected from the rest of the game.

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pacman000
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Re: Celeste (2018) - just another overrated indie game

Postby pacman000 » June 7th, 2019, 9:25 am

But I'm surprised to hear you say Cuphead is "very creepy" looking.

I'm not too surprised; a lot of people find that old rubber-hose animation style creepy. It's sometimes stiff & uncanny-valley-ish. Then the animators decide to add a bunch of surreal elements...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h3P3VquOblk

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Retro STrife
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Re: Celeste (2018) - just another overrated indie game

Postby Retro STrife » December 30th, 2020, 10:58 am

eneuman96 wrote:The level design is excellent, but the game itself isn't? You go on to say the game isn't all that fun, which seems to be a contradiction of what you say about the level design -- I wouldn't praise it that highly if I didn't enjoy playing through it, after all. Platformers live and die on their level design, so to say that having excellent levels does not equal an excellent platformer strikes me as odd, but at the end of the day it's your own opinion.


Celeste came up in another thread, so I was looking back over this and saw this question that I had missed before.

I agree that level design and fun usually go hand in hand. However, I think Celeste presents an exception. I say the level design in the game is genius for a few reasons. The design is based around just one move (jumping) and yet it finds countless ways to progress that one move to feel like it is always introducing something new. Some of those concepts are just genius, especially considering that this game is very long and yet each segment of a level always feels fresh. The difficulty progression is absolutely perfect too, the difficulty progresses very gradually and consistently upward, never uneven. Also, figuring out how to get past obstacles is really intuitive.. you might not figure out the puzzle immediately, but when you do it always makes sense and you never feel cheated. And you feel real accomplishment from achieving it. The platformer movement is also perfect too, and just so fluid and effortless.

All of that said, I died 4000 times and took 20+ hours to complete because it is way too difficult and way to tedious. The fact that the levels and platforming is well designed does not mean that they are fun. It does not save the game from the tedium. By the 4th or 5th level, I was simultaneously thinking "wow this design is so smart" and "wow I can't wait for this level to end" the entire time. And the later levels (6 to 8) are so long and so tedious as to be almost unbearable, especially when going after the collectibles in those levels.


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