Out now for Xbox One, PS4 and PC, Skylar & Plux: Adventure on Clover Island is a short but enjoyable classic platforming romp.
Modern 3D platformers are firmly rooted in the past, taking inspiration from any source they can get their hands on, rather than trying to innovate.
A few short generations ago, 3D platformers were at their absolute peak. Once Mario showed us the way to do it (as he so often does), it opened the floodgate for every other imitator and ‘me too’ wannabe to capitalize on that hype. Some of them were very good of course; but for every Banjo-Kazooie, there was a myriad of uninspired items of shovelware clogging things up like Rascal, Earthworm Jim 3D, Jersey Devil, and the infamous Bubsy 3D.
Once this zenith had passed, the genre took a nosedive, relegated to the status of occasional curio. Sandbox-style exploration and discovery subsided, shifting the concept towards focused, objective-based gameplay. It seemed that the colorful world of the mascot collect-a-thon had been put to rest.
Super Mario Odyssey may be a marvel in platforming games due to its ambitious game design and level structure, but it’s not the only platformer out there that’s worthy of some praise.