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Limbo review
Exceptional
by solarmax

Wow, just wow... what a way to welcome me to the modern puzzle platformer genre.

Limbo is one of those games where revealing too much about it could ruin the fun and appeal of it. Interestingly enough, Arnt Jensen (creator of the game) takes the same approach... he doesn't reveal too much of anything in the game, where it would rob it of its intrigue. You wake up in a forest as a boy, not knowing who you are, what your name is, and what your task entails. It's up to you to piece the elements together and embark on a journey that plays on your own personal, imaginative mind.

With a simple but effective shadow/light setting, the ambiance of the game is eerily dark and astonishingly enigmatic. It grips you by the jugular and forces you to submit to its visual authority. The art style is reminiscent of Tim Burton's shadowy netherworld trademark material, a wise choice that really compliments the mood of the game. Music is non-existent. The audio is placed at the forefront, with an amplified emphasis on your surroundings. Turn your sound up as high as possible to soak it all in... you're welcome.

Limbo is filled with various puzzles, some more challenging than others. Admittedly, I had a few moments where the solution was in 'broad daylight'... but I took the liberty to overthink it in so many ways, wreaking my brain cells in the process. I literally created problems for myself that weren't even there to begin with, a testament to the ingenuity of the puzzle designs. In other cases, I had to shut the game off and move on to something else (with the answer unexpectedly arriving in my head much later, during a drive to Chipotle, of all places). My love for expletives were repeatedly thrown at the screen, stemming from an infuriated sense of frustration with not knowing how to solve the later puzzles. However, I did manage to solve all of them on my own... well, save for one. I resorted to YouTube for it and and thought "Man, I wouldn't have never figured that one out."

The beauty in Limbo is dying endlessly (Yeah, you read that right). Being able to learn from trial/error and familiarizing yourself with the mechanics of the world is a must. Sure... it breaks the flow of the game, but nothing feels more satisfying than eventually overcoming a puzzle that remarkably stumped you for 45 minutes to an hour.

All in all, a short but engrossing game that rewards you with unwavering amounts of patience and persistence. While it may disappoint some with its minimalist narrative decision, I thought it excelled in this regard. It unabashedly caters to a variety of interpretations and theories, making it that much more interesting and memorable long after you’ve finished it.
«Constantly dying and enjoy it»
«That ending!»

Other reviews26

Journal Style Review:

Good opening. Clearly the prequel to inside which I really liked. 

Beat it. Enjoyed it. The puzzles were quite clever. Only once did I google a solution because I was stuck and getting frustrated. The style was nice. I do think Inside improves upon the game in pretty much every aspect from art style to puzzle quality, but this was still a short and sweet game that I enjoyed.

Finals Score: B+
this is a good game.  If you're into games as art, you ought to play it.
Great. Simple with nice design. Sometimes demanding to overcome some of the challenges. 
«Constantly dying and enjoy it»
very nice game with a dark atmosphere highly recommended for players who like dark games.
 
«Blew my mind»
Peak atmosphere
«Blew my mind»
Limb + Bardo = Limbo.

«An intermediate stage between one phenomenon and another».

Infinity and cyclicality. These feelings were with me throughout the game. The boy's determination and courage instilled hope and interest throughout the adventure. It seemed like this game would never end, and when the end came, it felt like my journey was starting all over again.

Thanks «Playdead» for taking the platformer to a new level and giving birth to the art house video game genre.
«Blew my mind»
«Constantly dying and enjoy it»
I'd like it more if it was a bit lenient on the perfect movement. Timing has to be to perfect to go through and It frustrated me a lot. The art is superb though the game play style is too slow and I don't like this kind of puzzle solving. 
Can play once I guess.  Not for me, I just finished just for the sake of finishing it it, I would have dropped it midway otherwise.
Great game, although gameplay becomes a bit repetative near the end (game is short so it doesn't get repetative for long). Never the less, defenitely a must play for anyone who enjoys a beautifull artstyle, abstract storytelling and puzzles.
'arrttyuukkkj
«Blew my mind»
«Just one more turn»
Strong 8 to a light 9.