4 out of 5. While simple in design, it presents a fun castle to explore and a variety of challenging bosses to defeat. It's a nice short and sweet way to fill an evening or two of game time.
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How Metroidvania is it? Perfect Fit. While the game is short, it perfectly fits the formula of a Castlevania.
Primary Challenge: Melee Combat
Time to beat: ~4 hours
Review Info: This game was played on Steam

More Info

Developer: Bombservice
Publisher: Playism
Sub-genre: Igavania
Features: Map System, Equipment System, Multiple Difficulty modes, 2D Platformer, Melee Combat, Fast Travel/Teleporters
Difficulty: Low, Medium, High
Linearity/Openness: High Gating - No Handholding
Platforms: Windows, Linux, MacOS, Steam, GOG, Switch, PS4, Xbox One
Release Date: 2016/03/04
Available Languages: English, Japanese, French, Italian, German, Spanish, Danish, Korean, Portuguese, Russian, Simplified Chinese

Store Links

    Amazon    Steam    Humble Bundle    GOG    Playstation    Xbox Store    Nintendo eShop    

Buy Momodora Reverie Under The Moonlight if you like…

  • Short, but Sweet Games
  • Pretty pixel art style
  • Meloncholy and ponderous atmosphere
  • Clutch combat with high control
  • Simple controls with high depth for mastery

▼ Review continues below ▼

Momodora: Reverie Under the Moonlight is a game which proves that simplicity is sometimes the best way to achieve greatness. One of the consequences to this approach though is that the game is very short – I think it took me less than 5 hours to complete. But, in the Metroidvania Genre this is standard fare, and the game has multiple difficulty levels and achievement upgrade items to unlock for perfect running bosses, so I think there is still a lot of value in the price tag. Most important in that value though is a great memorable challenge.

The Priestess you play as has only two weapons for the entire game; A Maple Leaf and a Bow. Using a controller, the Bow is fired with one of the shoulder buttons, and your maple leaf with the face buttons. The bow has a chargeable attack which deals more damage and fires a spreadshot, and because of this control scheme you can charge it while you perform melee attacks, allowing for an interesting dynamic of combos and skill. The Maple Leaf seems like an odd choice for a weapon, but in practice it whips out similar to some sword animations in other games, and it has a familiar three hit combo you can mess with.

RUTM is tightly designed around these two mechanics making traversing the castle interesting because of the gameplay alone rather than because of variety in upgrades. Attacks have a crunchy impact to them, hitstunning enemies in a satisfying way. You also have a dodge roll that moves in the direction you push the button, so it’s less awkward to use than the Symphony of the NIght back dash – if you don’t mind me comparing Momodora to its Metroidvania forefather.

Since there are no other weapons, exploring the castle unlocks new traversal options that add variety to the combat in interesting ways, and like any well-designed Metroidvania, it’s fun and satisfying to explore to find new relics and upgrades.

I’ve spent this entire review talking about the gameplay, and I could just leave it at that – it’s totally worth playing for that alone. But I don’t think I could end this review without mentioning the beautiful pixel art and music. The art speaks for itself – the screenshots should be enough to show how good it is. But between these two elements, along with the afforementioned game design triumphs, Momodora is a beautiful little game.

Momodora: Reverie Under the Moonlight is short and sweet, but also challenging and deeply satisfying, making it one of my favorite Metroidvania games,


Final Score

4/5

Scoring system overview


Metroidvania Breakdown

Combat
– 5

While simple, the mechanics have enough depth to carry it through all of its well-designed challenges

Platforming
– 3

The late game has some more difficult platforming, but overall not a huge focus

Exploration
– 3

The game is relatively small. There are some good secrets to find but overall the castle's size makes it less of a point for recommendation

Puzzle
– 2.5

There are some surreal puzzles to progress the game but ultimately not a major focus

Story
– 3

Story is told in a minimalist way. Connected as a ''prequel'' to the other Momodora games, but the narrative is practically non-existant.

Graphics
– 4

Gorgeous pixel art and animations that make combat feel crunchy

Music
– 3.5

Mostly forgetable, but atmospheric nonetheless

Replayability
– 3.5

Every boss has a special bonus if you perfect them, plus mulitple difficulty modes provide quite a bit to shoot for if you're challenging yourself. Includes a harder New Game +


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