To call NaissanceE a platfomer is to do a disservice to the developer. NaissanceE is a platformer with a difference—several difference, actually. It starts with the artistic design. Dark rooms of twisted geometry create an abstract architectural world, the likes of which we’ve never seen before. It’s like taking a trip to the Fundació Joan Miró museum in Barcelona—inspiring, mind-bending stuff.
The architecture continues to feel unique even as you progress through the game. New spaces, new uses of geometrical shapes, are continually presented to you, keeping novelty in every step of the game.
If the architecture seems torturously difficult, it’s not so painfully hard as the difficulty level. Your mission is to move through the world by jumping on platforms… in the dark. 3D jumping was already a bit of an extreme sport, but thrown in pitch black and it’s practically suicide. So difficult is it that you might end up needing a new keyboard as you constantly smash your head into it in frustration—heck, you may even end up needing a new head.
However, the odds are that if you’re into the sort of German expressionism-esque graphics, you’re the type of gamer who enjoys using your noggin and doesn’t mind a challenge. The difficulty suits the design of the game. Sure, you might need to take your time to master the game, but so what, given the quality of the visuals you won’t mind spending a little time in each room anyway.
I suspect that NaissanceE will lose some review points from other critics for the wrong reason. That reason is that it will remind them of other platformers, which had hard jumps because of bad design. The challenge with NaissanceE doesn’t come from bad design. It’s intentionally challenging. The game is its own beast, and it should be praised for that.
NaissanceE is going to split audiences and critics. Many are going to absolutely love this game for its unique design, others will hate it because of its difficult jumps. For my own part, I simply can’t resist a game with this much originality. I highly recommend anyone who enjoys unique games or games with extremely creative design, to hurry over to the game’s website and start playing.
Overall: 4.5 out of 5.