ARY & THE SECRET OF SEASONS
Fulfil your destiny in this nostalgic platformer
PUBLISHER MODUS GAMES DEVELOPER EXIIN ETA 2019
There’s something quite magical about this platform adventure game. It isn’t the fact that the protagonist uses actual magic to control the seasons, but instead that the game does a wonderful job of recreating that feeling of playing platform games of old, while at the same time offering up something new altogether. What makes it all the more surprising is that it’s being made by only eight people.
You play as Ary, who is tasked with bringing balance to the world. 1,000 years ago an evil mage threatened the world of Valdi, but it was alright in the end: a mighty warrior defeated the mage and sealed him up deep within a vault. To ensure that he would never be released, four men were appointed protectors of the vault with each made responsible for protecting a different season. Now a mysterious force has started to mess about with the world, causing seasons to pop up in the wrong places, prompting an emergency meeting of the Guardians. Ary goes to attend the meeting in secret and arrives to find the Guardians unconscious and all of the season crystals stolen.
Ary’s father was Guardian Of Winter, as was his father before him, and as per tradition that responsibility is to pass on to his first-born son, in this case Ary’s brother. Unfortunately, her brother died in a terrible incident and so the role falls to Ary. With the fate of Valdi resting in her hands, she must journey to the four corners of the land, each belonging to a different Guardian, and put a stop to the chaos.
After becoming the new Guardian Of Winter, Ary acquires the ability to control the seasons, which you use by casting magical spheres that contain a particular season inside. In the beginning you can only harness winter, but as you progress you gain the power of all four.
This is how you navigate the world and solve environmental puzzles. For example, casting the winter season sphere might freeze over the water in a lake and allow you to access new areas, or generate platforms that you can use to reach hidden caves. The only rules with casting the season spheres is that you can only use three at any given time, and only one season for each. Also, they can never cross each other or be combined – so if you cast a summer sphere and cast one for winter right next to it the two domes will sit side by side. Stone monoliths scattered throughout the land can be used to amplify your spells, making your spheres even bigger, with some being more potent than others.
The spheres don’t just help you solve puzzles, they can also be used to help you in combat. Some enemies are susceptible to certain weather conditions, and casting the right one might just stop them in their tracks long enough to take them out, or maybe even strike them with lightning. But you’ll need to be careful. Some enemies may end up becoming more powerful, so you’ll need to choose the right season for the circumstance.
Where other developers have tried and failed, eXiin might succeed: the team has managed to bottle up that ’90s platforming nostalgia and created a beautiful and vibrant world. The story might seem a little cliched but the idea of playing around with the seasons to help you navigate the world and defeat your enemies is incredibly unique and really fun to do. We can’t wait to get our hands on the finished game later this year.
“The team has managed to bottle up that ’90s platforming nostalgia”
Above Ary can eventually utilise the power of all four seasons.
far left Our hero has to journey across the four corners of her world to avert a catastrophe.