So without looking at the tags on Steam, I would say that Limbo is a psychological horror puzzle platformer game. And let me just look it up... Ohh, the psychological horror aspect was completely wrong. I suppose the reasons why I thought the game was psychological horror came after finishing the entire game. The game developed by Playdead (noice name there) released in 2011 and has since been ported to pretty much all platforms. "Uncertain of his sister's fate, a boy enters LIMBO", that's the only piece of information that we (the player) has about the plot of the game. There is no story as such in the game and as I usually don't look up information about a game before playing it (not even trailers, just screenshots and word of mouth is what win me over, that and a really cheap price point), I didn't know I was in for such an event. It took me nearly half the game to realize that there was no plot. There is a plot plot, but its not a conventional one. It's mostly metaphorical, with some literal bits strewn about here and there.
The game is entirely in black and white and the kid has glowing white eyes which help distinguish him in dark places and also reciprocate the dark and sad tone of the game. There is no music, just ambient noises and a little bit of a feel good humming sound from time to time at certain points in the game. Gameplay ranges from simple platforming to complex puzzle solving stuff using various objects that are present around you. Logic prevails in all puzzles, so while it might seem impossible at first, with enough brain cells spent into it the answer will become clear (that or you can use YouTube, like I did). I finished the game in about 6 hours with all collectibles found. And yes there are collectibles and finding all of them is quite the daunting task (YouTube FTW).
The atmosphere that this game has for it is just amazing. It puts you in the shoes of this little boy, who's all alone in this dark world with no idea where to go. The sounds of the objects and places around you make it even more immersive (also, its important that there’s no voice acting or such in the game).The puzzles are unique and interesting, but I don't think the game warrants a second try, unless you want to see the game in a new light. See, the thing is, it’s not just a puzzle game. It's packed to the brim with metaphors as well as clues and hints to the actual plot of the game, which the creator himself has confirmed. And because of which numerous forums and groups have come up with theories and interpretations of what is the story of the little boy and his sister. And the thing is, for me, I believe that the game gives enough hints to make the storyline ambiguous, that is, instead of a definitive ending that is "the right answer" as the creator intended, it is subjective and as such depends on the perspective of you (the player) to figure out what the story behind this little guy is.
But apart from that, there’s not much to it. If you are not invested in the puzzles then you’d find it really difficult to stay engaged and continue playing the game. And while the game is relatively short, sometimes a puzzle may just prove to be “too annoying” and you might just call it quits. And that’s the vibe I got from the game. You kind of have to have atleast some sort of interest in puzzle games, otherwise it’ll end up being too boring. You’d rather just watch a Lets Play at that point.
The puzzles themselves are quite creative, and you’d need to spend IQ points to come up with the solution. A lot of the times you might have to go back to the previous screen to retrieve certain objects or access pathways that were locked before and it might take a while getting used to it. The platforming is not tough and does not rely on ridiculous reflex times (like Super Meat Boy, boy that game was a doozy), that is, until the final third of the game. Here, the game relies on well-timed jumps and proper puzzling simultaneously, failing which would mostly result in instant death. Speaking of death, the death animations are freaking awesome. I’m not kidding, they’re very creative and always interesting to see in what way the kid is going to get killed next (uh oh… ).
And on that positive note, I’d like to say that Limbo is a thinking game with interesting puzzles and an even more interesting plot that is not apparent until you start looking for it, for better or for worse. If you’re a fan of puzzle games then definitely buy it and if you’re not, I mean, it’s mostly on sale on Steam at a really low price, so go ahead buy it who knows you might end up liking it very much.
I think my pros and cons really describe how it entirely depends on you whether something is a pro or a con...
Final Rating: 7.5/10
Final Word: I Love Spiders!!! Not really :((((((((