When you think of platformers, you probably think of jumping. Simple action is a staple of the genre, whether we’re talking about classic side-scrolling adventures or larger 3D worlds. But Lucky LunaThe latest version of Netflix’s fledgling game service offers something a little different: it removes the jump altogether.
Lucky Luna It takes place in a beautiful pixel-art world of ancient ruins and the task of players to navigate a series of levels to uncover its secrets. It contains many basic elements of this type, such as collectible orbs, hidden areas, moving platforms, deadly spikes, and enemies that move in specific patterns. Torsion is the lack of a jump button. In fact, Lucky Luna It has no buttons on the screen at all. To move, you can simply swipe left or right; A swipe will see a color dash across the screen, while lighter taps will make smaller movements. Navigating safely involves using those limited options along with smart timing to avoid obstacles and reach the end of each stage.
I played the first few levels, and while I can say that Lucky Luna Definitely quite a challenge, I was also surprised at how quickly I adapted to not having a jump button. After several stages, I didn’t miss it at all; The vertical levels are cleverly designed around the scroll mechanic, which seems intuitive once you learn to let go of the jump. It’s kind of like an inverse Super Mario Runwhich is another mobile that deals with platforms, but considers jumping as the central way to interact with the world.
According to Andrew Schimmel, producer at developer Snowman – best known for Alto A series of snowboarding games – the idea was “to evoke those experiences like the classic experiences we grew up with but don’t match. We didn’t feel like an endless runner could really capture that feeling that we kind of wanted to chase.” The decision to remove the jump button came later in development, but it naturally had a major impact on the experience. “It was challenging, but it really allowed us to build on the level of design and get more creative,” he explains. “That’s why we went with one touch and then tried to introduce something new at every level.”
Although Netflix started its mobile gaming efforts last yearAnd the The service still hasn’t gained much momentum since then. However, the quality of the available games has definitely improved, with notable titles like in the breach And the attention Coming to service. For Snowman, Netflix’s potential audience was something the studio couldn’t refuse. “We’ve reached out to a lot of people with some of our previous work, but this is just like a new potential audience,” explains Ryan Cash, Snowman’s creative director. “And I think it’s always exciting to be a part of something back in the days as well. That’s really attractive to us.”
On mobile, Netflix has joined Apple Arcade as part of A thriving subscription gaming scene. Snowman was heavily involved in this scene; The studio has released a number of games on Arcade, including An improved version of the hit Alto Odyssey. The emergence of these services has opened a new path for game developers, providing a way to launch high-quality premium experiences without having to worry about how to monetize them. Cash expects a lot of space changes to happen over the next few years—and for now, Snowman has a front row seat. “We just watch it unfold in front of us.”
Lucky Luna Available on iOS and Android via Netflix starting today.