Candles are curious little things. Wax, a wick, and voila, light. Though, this curious little candle you take control of has legs. Not your regular candle (must be from the Beyond section of Bed, Bath, and Beyond).
In this indie platformer, you are the titular Candleman, able to light yourself for about ten seconds at a time to discover all kinds of secrets as you navigate the mysterious world you find yourself in.
An engaging game that combines puzzle and platforming elements with a fairytale narrative light is your ally and enemy in Candleman. There are times when you’ll have to use Candleman’s trademark light to navigate, illuminat, and activate certain parts of the world as you venture on for the enormous light in the distance. But sometimes the light reveals things best left hidden, like monsters, spirits, or other denizens of the shadow that seek to snuff out your glow.
Developed by Spotlightor Interactive, their tagline is “Less, but better.”, which seems to fit Candleman to a tee. While little seems to go on initially, the game draws you in with a gentle calmness, but keeps you there with a foreboding excitement not usually attributed to other games.
Indie games tend to be simplistic in nature for ease of engagement, but Spotlightor has soared towards it like…well, a moth to a flame. Your journey will take you across a world of light and dark as you carefully manage your flame and the light you cast, traverse invisible floors, spread your light, avoid the horrors, sail across the most deadly foe of all (water, of course), seek out secrets and hidden passageways, all while doing your best to not burn yourself out–literally. It might seem simple at first, but those ten seconds can add up pretty quickly, and then you’re snuffed out like a dying candle.
Originally released on PlayStation 4 in 2018, Candleman is seeing a Nintendo Switch release October 3rd, an ideal month for a game about a sentient candle seeking like and navigating a supernatural labyrinth. The levels are billed as “challenging with a smooth” difficulty curve, sure to entice casual and hardcore puzzle fans alike. Until next time, stay and play savvy, gamers!