Friday, February 4, 2011

DEMO: NightSky (Windows)

NightSky for Windows

Genre: Puzzle Platformer
Full Game Price: $10.00
No. of Players: 1

In 5 Words: Art, Tranquil, Robust, Challenging, Spartan

A friend of mine recommended that I try this demo out, so I did. Having finished the demo, I have a hard time considering NightSky to be a simple game. The amount of style and art put into this "game" is impressive.

NightSky is a puzzle platformer where you move a ball around a series of levels. Your ball has certain abilities at certain times, like the ability to go fast or stop. Sometimes you can control these abilities, and sometimes you can't. At times, your ball will interact directly with obstacles and even "vehicles" ranging from simple open-top wagons to tri-wheel enclosures. The physics of the game provide a robust set of rules and mechanics that you'll get used to very quickly. The gameplay is straightforward and challenging, but where NightSky really shines is in its ambiance.

NightSky's graphics and soundtrack can be described as beautifully spartan, even haunting. The terrain and ball are silhouetted against various pastel twilight skies while the music, a very experimental ambient sound that suits a lonely setting sun, sets a tranquil pace and tone that helps to keep frustration levels at a minimum. While vaguely melancholy, the setting is not static. Trees and grass sway under the influence of a gentle breeze, a variety of creatures bob to and fro, and rockets launch quietly into the darkness from distant platforms. NightSky is truly a work of art.

The NightSky demo occupied about 15 minutes of my time, and it was time well spent. And yet, I'm not sold on the full game. It didn't hook me. I almost feel like I spent 15 minutes admiring an amazing interactive painting at an art museum. There was a certain novelty to the admittedly worthwhile experience. With a $10.00 price tag, NightSky is certainly not expensive, but the question remains: is it worth it? For me, NightSky will be a fall-back: if I finish the other games I'm playing and I'm left looking for more, I might buy it.

If you like puzzlers and platformers, please give NightSky a few minutes of your time. You won't be disappointed.

Demo Gamer Stats:
Age range: 8 and up
Demo length: 15-30 minutes
Demo worth playing? Definitely
Full game worth buying? I'm not completely sold, but I may end up buying it.

Have you played NightSky? Did it whisk you off to a world of wistful wonder? Sound off in the comments!

--Demo Gamer

(System requirements: minimal, played on 1.6 GHz Mobile Core2Duo, 4 GB RAM, NVidia 8400M with no issues)


  1. It looks a lot like the gameLimbo on xbox 360, except less creepy/violent.

  2. Not familiar with that one. This one is definitely tranquil, though.