Child of Light in motion: how Ubisoft’s “playable poem” plays

Child of Light

When Ubisoft Montreal said Child of Light was to be a “playable poem”, it wasn’t clear they meant the entire thing would be in verse. Rather than take advantage of the studio’s experience with voice actors, the game’s dialogue with be text only – read line-by-line according the player’s own meter.

That’s pretty cool. But it’s not the coolest thing on show in this AAA art game.

Nope: the coolest thing is the bearded race of healers who smoke mint out of long pipes:

The developer demo above reveals Child of Light to be not only a highly unusual single player coming-of-age story, but a charmingly laid-back co-op game too – with the second player taking on the role of the British Gas mascot that drifts after protagonist Aurora.

Outside of combat, firefly Igniculus can pop open out-of-reach chests, spring traps and suchlike. Inside, he can heal allies or slow enemy attacks – crucial in a semi-turn-based system where an interrupted spell means a lost move and a potential pummelling.

Elsewhere, there are Dark Scrolls-style player notes scrawled on the environments – which make deft use of layered backgrounds via Rayman’s UbiArt Framework.

All very impressive stuff – though I worry this game about crows might be a tad too jay-arr-pee-jee for me or the PC. Then again, look at me – I’m already rhyming. Do you think it’ll upstage any indies in your affections?

Ta, RPS.