To begin with, there is no specific story. The game starts in a black and white 2D Environment with a boy (the protagonist of this game) "waking" up suddenly in the middle of the forest. There's no objective shown clearly, so there is nothing much to get you started on. There are quite a many instances in the game with strong messages of death and violence - people hanging by their necks from poles, dead bodies floating in the water etc. Since the game doesn't have any kind of voice-over or on-screen narration it is upto you, the player, to interpret the story.
You basically have to make your way through wave after wave of various obstacles and puzzles (some of which gave me a really bad headache.) The variety of puzzles are varied and very impressive and do not feel repetitive. In the later stages of the game, the changing gravity opened a whole new dimension, and it will keep you interested till the final puzzle is solved.
There's no one here
The gameplay and controls are pretty basic. You just have a total of 5 buttons to play with - the direction buttons and the [Ctrl] button that enables you to push or pull various objects. The physics of the game is top-notch.
One thing has to be said though; there are various places of the game where you will have to do a "Trail by Death" sort of thing - that is trying out various things to get through the obstacles. There are various types of creatures you will encounter in the game and in most of these interactions there is always something to be gained (eg. you have to climb a huge bee kind of insect that gives you a lift to higher ground)
You go through a series of landscapes, from the forest to the iconic place with the "Hotel" sign, to a factory, before you finally reach your goal.
All kinds of creatures
There is a gradual increase in the difficulty of the puzzles. At no point in the game will you feel that it has suddenly gotten very difficult and you are unable to progress further. If you use each and every product in the game appropriately you will reach your goal. There is no item in the game that is wasted. You have to use each and everything.
When you do complete the game, you will be left not only with a deep sense of self satisfaction but also with a need to introspect. You will need to think about what the game really is and what it wants to convey to you.
Although the puzzles look difficult, a bit of clear thinking does help most of the time. Unfortunately, I for one, found this out the hard way. I kept wandering around trying to figure out solutions whereas the solution was sitting right in front of me!
Brilliant. Yes. That's just what this game is. This is no conventional game. The devs have managed to maintain a dark, eerie atmosphere with a great soundtrack. Though minimal, the sound effects do manage to take your breath away. The game doesn't convey anything directly. (Not once did we get a message or a mystery voice guiding us). The game leaves it to the player to decipher the plot in his/her own way.
It's a dark and lonely place this
The dark atmosphere with good backgrounds will keep the gamer engaged. Average playtime is around 4 to 6 hours (although it took me longer as I lingered around some puzzles not being able to spot the easiest of solutions). You will be thoroughly engaged the entire time. You won't want to exit the game and direct your attention elsewhere. It will surely keep you in a state of 'Limbo' mulling over the story of the little boy. The game is completely worth its $9.99 (Rs. 560) price tag.
Steam Store Link- Limbo on Steam
Disclaimer for User Reviews
Reviews written by non-tech2 staff are to be considered as personal opinions based on actual experiences by users themselves. Ratings depicted are purely user based scores and are in no way a reflection on tech2’s own rating mechanism. Tests are conducted by users and their scores are gathered through their own means with no involvement from tect2 in any way.
To read the offcial tech2 review click here.
Updated 21 May, 2013, 8:08 pm IST
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