The mysterious world you explore in Seed of Life is a feast for the eyes, but a bit rough around the edges.
Seed of life is a story-driven puzzle platformer with unique game mechanics and set on an alien world. In the world of Lumia, you play as Cora, a young girl who leaves her quiet home to stop her planet’s sun from burning out, and save her grandfather.
You are introduced to the planet’s last survivors – Cora and her grandfather, who live in a small, quiet cottage on a river. We are introduced to Cora just as she finds her grandfather’s note, explaining he has embarked on a mission to rekindle the seed of life, and stop the sun from dying.
Unwilling to let her grandfather go on his own, Cora ventures out of her home into the corrupted wilds of Lumia. In her efforts to cross the corrosive river, we learn the planet has long since been conquered and ruled by a race of aliens called the Naumoreans. Just as Cora ducks out of sight from a Naumorean ship, she witnesses a strange pod deploy from the hull of the aircraft, and decides to investigate.
Upon discovering the crashed drone, you are introduced to an AI named Nar, who, even though their motives are unclear, Cora decides to trust and join forces with in order to save the planet. Nar guides you to a pedestal, where you must solve your first puzzle, lining up the symbols on the base. As soon as you do, the pedestal activates and you are able to place the petals you found previously. Petals placed into pedestals unlock the enhancements of the Talisman.
The Talisman is an augmentation that allows Cora to navigate the toxic environments more easily. Initially you get a scanning ability which shows you important waypoints in your immediate vicinity. Armed with this, the two set off to find the Seed of Life.
As you progress through the landscape of Lumia, you are able to get an idea of just how corrupt and dangerous the planet has become. The very air itself has become unbreathable in areas of the world, as well as the water. You must collect petals quickly, and unlock additional capsules in order to progress. The talisman is able to create a light source, scan the area, heal you, and eventually increase things like movement.
There are more platforms than puzzles in this game, though, the level design does make it difficult to tell when you have found a hidden area or if you managed to get somewhere you weren’t meant to go.
Hitboxes for interacting with objects in the world are also very specific, if Cora isn’t facing a petal or other object just right, it won’t allow you to interact. This bugginess can sometimes get you killed. The enemies are on a patrolling circuit, and have a range of visibility. If you happen to enter their field of attack you are instantly killed, and any new lumium capacity you didn’t save at a checkpoint will be lost.
The scanning tool is a sort of a looking glass mechanic, allowing you to see otherwise invisible platforms and makes opening certain doors possible. Every talisman ability will slowly drain your Lumium. In order to refill it you can use Lumium deposits in the world, or find a checkpoint.
Levels are jarring and their design makes it easy to think you may have missed exploring areas. If you happen to progress too far in one direction, it moves you along before you’re able to return. There are very long gaps in story progression throughout the game. Occasionally Cora will talk to Nar and some story is revealed, but it is incredibly sparse.
The main puzzles are found in the slider puzzles inside the pedestals, which unfortunately fell short. Too simple to be taken seriously, and not much of a challenge. The main source of challenge is found in the semi-open worlds, trying to navigate and find all of the petals for the next talisman upgrade. There are areas where you can easily die multiple times just trying to get past a platforming area, which hinders the flow of the game play.
Seed of Life set out to achieve a unique puzzle platformer, but falls short on both fronts due to buggy controls, and incredibly easy puzzles. The visuals, story, and world are all solid, but combined with the level and puzzle design ends up dragging it down to a mediocre title.
This title is not recommended for fans of the puzzle platform genre, unless you have the patience required to get through the bugs in order to experience the story, and world.
-Great visual design
-Unique story and world
-Controls are stiff and clunky
-Assets and hitboxes were buggy
-Some significant lag in certain areas
-Not as intuitive as one would expect
-Voice acting was sub-par, very flat
-Jarring/Confusing level design
2 out of 5
Review key provided by PR. Seed of Life is available now!