App Reviewed on: iPhone 3GS
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I might be at a bit of an advantage when it comes to playing Lumi on iOS since I've actually played the original Xbox Live indie game version well before this one, and it was certainly a stand-out title back then. Of course, it was standing-out among games that (generally speaking) involved turning controllers into "massagers" and digital magic 8-balls. But now Lumi has its work cut out for it. While the App Store certainly has its share of pointless drivel, it's also home to some of the best mobile games (and just plain old game games) around.
When the luminous rodent's world is absorbed by darkness and its denizens are twisted into horrible monsters it's up to the titular fuzzy thing, immune to the effects of the darkness thanks to the light-up fur, to fix it. Each of the ten levels is engulfed in shadow, but by collecting fireflies and bringing them to special trees, Lumi can drive the darkness away and bring the light back. There's lots of jumping, sure, but most of the action in this puzzle-platformer involves the careful use of gravity wells which can be used to slingshot the glowing critter all over the place.
As an indie game on Xbox Live, Lumi was easily considered gorgeous. On iOS, it's just as beautiful. The watercolor-like visuals, the use of light and vibrant hues, it's just a pleasure to look at. The controls are also super-simple and effective. Move, jump, then press jump again in order to automatically get pulled towards a nearby floating glowing thing. Pulling back on the virtual stick will aim and pressing jump again will dismount. Easy to learn but it takes practice to master.
I ran into a few issues with missing a firefly because it was obscured by some foreground elements, then being unable to go back for it thanks to the level layout. Thankfully my progress (i.e. lit trees and such) was saved when I quit but I could still continue from the start of the stage. Thus being able to snag that one errant glow bug and continue on my way. Getting 100% isn't required so I could've just beaten the level without it, but I tend to be something of a completionist. I'm also not a fan of just how dark the levels can be a I've inadvertently blundered into hazards and almost gotten stuck simply because I couldn't see them. But I suppose that's to be expected in a game where darkness is a persistent theme, eh?
The original Lumi was a must-have game. This iOS port is even more so. It's actually less expensive and will be featuring even more content (game modes, levels, etc.) thanks to planned future updates. Fans of platformers or stylistic indie games in general shouldn't let this one slip by unnoticed.