Hot spots only for Lilly Looking Through

Look, it happened. I previously mentioned Lilly Looking Through in the post about Windosill in hopes that it would stay in my mind and get me to play it sooner than later, and I ended up playing it sooner than later. Woo, go me. Alas, that trick doesn’t work every time–sorry, games like Silent Hill 3, ???, and ???. I guess it doesn’t matter how many times I type your names. Sigh. Anyways, I probably don’t have too much to say about this Kickstarted point-and-click adventure game from Geeta Games, but I want to give it its spot in the limelight regardless.

Lilly Looking Through tells a somewhat straightforward story the basically boils down to an adventurous childhood day gone tipsy-turvy. Lilly is playing in the woods with her younger brother Row when, suddenly, he gets tangled in a strange red piece of fabric and is whisked away on an extremely strong breeze. Armed only with a pair of magical goggles, Lilly must make her way past crumbling bridges, pitch-black caverns, and deep, icy lakes to rescue him. See, when Lilly puts on the goggles, she is transported backwards in time, with her surroundings revert to their former state. By affecting things in the past, she can change the layout of the future, and get to where she needs to be.

It’s a good mechanic, watching cause and reaction play out, and something that I fuzzily remember from that one time I watched a neighbor play Day of the Tentacle when I was just a kid, switching between different characters in various time periods to affect each other’s environments or help pass essential items to solve puzzles. Except one of the nice things about Lilly Looking Through is there is no inventory; you are not picking up every stick, rock, and piece of rope in hopes of using them either logically or ironically down the road. Instead, it is all about the hot spots and figuring out what order levers should be pulled in or if you need to pull that lever first in the older realm and see what it does to the current realm. Occasionally, there will be an item to pick up in an environment, like a flaming torch, but you will use it almost immediately and then be done with it, which is comforting.

Interestingly, Lilly Looking Through is able to establish a palpable sense of place, with next to no words or dialogue. For the most part, Lilly is alone and doesn’t have anyone to talk to or interact with. All you get are screams of surprise or the desperate call for her brother. However, as she explores and searches for Row, you’ll see signs of civilization are all around. Except there are no people, no leftovers lingering about, save for their creations. It’s a lonely experience, but I connected with it, as I often had a lonely childhood, wandering the woods by myself in search of cool bugs or a dirty magazine. There’s a lot to wonder about here, but the story is light on details, focusing rather on the task at hand and sprinkling story details on the sides.

Lilly Looking Through is a short, but enjoyable couple hours of clicking. There’s a limited number of areas, and each spot focuses mostly on a singular puzzle to solve, and none of them are too tricky. Even if they are, with enough clicking, you’ll power through them. I also really dug the bits of beautiful animation throughout, and the ending leaves our characters in a strange, new world, one that, maybe, some day down the road, we’ll get to explore. Until then, I’ll continue searching for hot spots, like the one that lets me make this blog post go live so I can start playing something else. I think it is…this one…right…here.

2017 Game Review Haiku, #83 – Lilly Looking Through

Chasing after scarf
Magical goggles see more
Beautiful flow, worlds

I can’t believe I’m still doing this. I can’t believe I’ll ever stop. These game summaries in chunks of five, seven, and five syllable lines paint pictures in the mind better than any half a dozen descriptive paragraphs I could ever write. Trust me, I’ve tried. Brevity is the place to be. At this point, I’ve done over 200 of these things and have no plans of slowing down. So get ready for another year of haikus. Doumo arigatou gozaimasu.

2017 Game Review Haiku, #82 – Dark Heritage: Guardians of Hope

Philosopher’s stone
Find it, look into eyeballs
Unsure, keep clicking

I can’t believe I’m still doing this. I can’t believe I’ll ever stop. These game summaries in chunks of five, seven, and five syllable lines paint pictures in the mind better than any half a dozen descriptive paragraphs I could ever write. Trust me, I’ve tried. Brevity is the place to be. At this point, I’ve done over 200 of these things and have no plans of slowing down. So get ready for another year of haikus. Doumo arigatou gozaimasu.

Adding to the Backlog – Three More PlayStation 2 Titles, Woo

I’m not out to collect every single PlayStation 2 game ever made, because they sure did make a whole lot of them, but I have a list of several titles that I missed during the console’s heydays and am genuinely interested in acquiring and, when the time is right, playing. Yes, playing, because I love games of varying ages, especially JRPGs from this specific era in the industry, for reasons I’m not totally clear on just yet. They don’t make them like they used to, and when they try, they don’t always succeed. Anyways, for a good while there, I was able to find some PlayStation 2 cases at my local GameStops, but they eventually needed more shelf-space for other things, like amiibos and virtual reality gear, and stopped stocking them.

Recently, at a comic convention last April, I was able to grab a working copy of Dark Cloud, which I once had and was actually the very first game I got for my system as a young boy with some steady income before being dumb and trading it in for something else. The game, not the system. I’m still rocking my original PlayStation 2 because I take good care of my stuff. Right, the last time I added a bunch of old-ish games in one solid lump was back in February 2016, with me stocking up on an astounding ten games for my collection; you’ll not be surprised to learn I’ve not tried a single one of them yet. Sigh. One day, when the world is full of free time and no consequences or guilt-laden clouds.

Over the weekend, while Melanie was taking a buttercream flowers class, I had an hour or so to kill in Somerville, NJ, and so I stopped in Retro Classics to peruse their wares. I’ve been in the store before, picking up PS2 copies of The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King and The Hobbit for my constantly growing assemblage of all things related to The Lord of the Rings, but the last time I went I forgot to bring a list and found myself second-guessing whether or not I had this or that copy of said title and was reluctant to make any purchases. It’s always good to be prepared, and this time I totally was.

Here’s what I got:

That might not seem all that exciting of a haul to you, but Xenosaga Episode II: Jenseits von Gut und Böse is something I’ve never seen out in the wild, and my love for strange JRPGs from this era was too strong to resist grabbing a copy for around $15.00. Perhaps I now have more of a reason than ever to finally play through the first game, eating up those lengthy anime-driven cutscenes and e-mails and card-based minigames, knowing there is actually more to follow. The store also has a retail copy of Xenosaga Episode III: Also Sprach Zarathustra, but it was a little too pricey for me at the moment. You can see that I also nabbed Wallace & Gromit in Project Zoo, which pairs nicely with my case-less copy of Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit, and X-Men Legends so that I can go back to the beginning of when these comic book hero videogames became more RPG than mindless punching and optic blasting. I’m pretty pleased with the trio.

Anyways, that’s all for now. Alas, most of my list of desired PS2 games are really obscure beasts, like Summoner 2, Frank Herbert’s Dune, and Legaia 2: Duel Saga, and I just don’t think I’ll ever run into them at a store and I’m too timid to try and find them online for a “good” price and deal with trusting a stranger somewhere in the world to deliver on their promises. I’ll keep looking, but I won’t hold my breath. Because I’ll run out of air rather quickly. Until then, looks like I have some other things I can play. Y’know, when I find the time.

2017 Game Review Haiku, #81 – Gravity Bone

Spy on a mission
Follow voice. to poison, birds
Alas, ends with fall

I can’t believe I’m still doing this. I can’t believe I’ll ever stop. These game summaries in chunks of five, seven, and five syllable lines paint pictures in the mind better than any half a dozen descriptive paragraphs I could ever write. Trust me, I’ve tried. Brevity is the place to be. At this point, I’ve done over 200 of these things and have no plans of slowing down. So get ready for another year of haikus. Doumo arigatou gozaimasu.

2017 Game Review Haiku, #80 – Kith: Tales from the Fractured Plateaus, Episode One “Fetch Quest”

This game’s long title
Says it all, click on people
Fetch them what they want

I can’t believe I’m still doing this. I can’t believe I’ll ever stop. These game summaries in chunks of five, seven, and five syllable lines paint pictures in the mind better than any half a dozen descriptive paragraphs I could ever write. Trust me, I’ve tried. Brevity is the place to be. At this point, I’ve done over 200 of these things and have no plans of slowing down. So get ready for another year of haikus. Doumo arigatou gozaimasu.

2017 Game Review Haiku, #79 – The Roscovian Palladium

Rat in museum
Examine human culture
Ask Margot about…

I can’t believe I’m still doing this. I can’t believe I’ll ever stop. These game summaries in chunks of five, seven, and five syllable lines paint pictures in the mind better than any half a dozen descriptive paragraphs I could ever write. Trust me, I’ve tried. Brevity is the place to be. At this point, I’ve done over 200 of these things and have no plans of slowing down. So get ready for another year of haikus. Doumo arigatou gozaimasu.