Moondrop has just released their new game through Modus called Degrees of Separation. Going in I knew the game would be tantalizing with puzzles and beautiful artwork, but the game is so much more.
Characters & Abilities
Degrees of Separation is a game that has some classic puzzle and platforming elements, but wrapped in a beautiful environment that is almost paper-like in design. The characters, Ember and Rime are gorgeously made, and aside from them the only other character that gets interaction is the Dragon.
Ember has some unique abilities in the game when interacting with the environment. For example, she can swim underwater (where she holds her breath, a nice touch), and causes certain lanterns to light. Whereas Rime has the ability to freeze water, and make giant snowballs within the world to climb upon. In addition, he puts out the fire lanterns that Ember creates. By having these two characters that are distinctly separated by weather degrees, the game creates obstacles within their puzzles that you have to overcome.
Controls & Co-Op
The controls in the game are very basic, WASD, F to call your friend, E to interact, Space Bar for jumping, and Q to change characters. The game can be played in single-player where you control both, or local co-op that makes it way more interesting. With the basic controls you can become more immersed within the game without having to worry as much about accuracy or death. It’s honestly very easy to control, and it fit the ease of the game.
An update went in last month regarding the local co-op controls, players have the option of either:
- both using the same keyboard
- one using keyboard, one using controller
- both using individual controllers
Within the controls is the jumping game mechanic that was beautifully done. Since the two characters have a barrier between them separating their worlds, when jumping over one another it’s seamlessly smooth.
Sound & Narration
The sound effects within the game are spot-on. Included in this is the environmental noises and soundtrack such as the turning of gears or lifting of platforms, but also the character’s noises as they interact. When they fall they make a noise, etc. and it brings them more to life when you’re playing. I compared this slightly to Link in Legend of Zelda. He doesn’t talk himself, but he makes noises that give him identification. For noting, Mari Welde voiced Ember and Simon Stokke voiced Rime.
Another neat element within the game is that it’s fully narrated to describe the scene and where Ember and Rime are heading towards. Kira Buckland narrated the story, and it brought it to life.
This game is just beautiful. The ice and fire effects add so much to the game because the environment changes with each character. You can see the differences in one scene with Ember and Rime depending on where they are. The graphics are also very whimsical and fun, leading to a light-hearted game.
I’ve always enjoyed a good puzzle game from Portal and Portal 2 to Baba is You. They just have so much interesting aspects to them because they create game mechanics that are unique to them, and Degrees of Separation is no different. Their unique abilities come from weather conditions in fire and ice. For this reason the game reacts differently to each character and brings so much more interaction. I honestly loved playing Degrees of Separation and plan on doing more as they develop online co-op.
If you do enjoy a good head-scratching puzzle game, then look no further. Degrees of Separation is out now for the PC through Steam, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Nintendo Switch! Check it out here on their official website.