GDC Recap: Worldless

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I got to try Worldless at GDC, and it was one of the few times I have ever enjoyed a platformer. Worldless is a 2D minimalistic adventure platformer with an interesting battle mechanic. This game is beautiful, but the game has a great design. You play as this character of light and travel through this abstract world, fighting against monsters and marveling at how pretty everything is.

As far as platformers go, this one isn’t that bad. According to the game’s producer, the devs wanted to make the focus of the game its combat system. I don’t like platformers, but I found the experience pleasant and relaxing. I particularly loved how the world changes around the main character as you move her through the world. This feature was implemented to keep players from getting lost, and it works perfectly. It also looks great in practice.

The combat is where I had the most fun with the game. Combat is turn-based, but there is a slight rhythm mechanic to it. You can easily button-mash between turns to get through fights, but it is more efficient to get the timing correctly. The loop is simple. On your turn, you cast spells and abilities, and on theirs, you block. There are elemental weaknesses, resistances, and other quirks to keep combat engaging. Worldless also features a relatively expansive skill tree that you fill by absorbing monsters or finding hidden nodes. You can fill up the whole tree, so make sure you explore everything!

The demo does a fantastic job at slowly introducing mechanics as you explore the world and builds up perfectly to a final boss. The game design for this game is terrific, and I appreciate the attention to detail that went into the making of this experience. If you pay attention, the encounters give you enough hints to make the final boss fight easier. I was told that the boss in the demo isn’t as hard as the bosses in the full game, but I was also told that I was one of the few to beat it on the first try. I found the encounter to be challenging enough to keep me engaged. I wouldn’t have been able beat the boss without a solid strategy or proper game design.

If you like RPGs and platformers, you should be looking into Worldless. The combat is fun and engaging, the platforming is relaxing, and the game is beautiful. I loved my limited exposure to this game, and I look forward to its release.

Worldless is coming to the PC and Xbox sometime this year, but an official date hasn’t been announced. The Demo is available on Steam, and I highly recommend you go download it. Don’t forget to wishlist it while you’re there!

Shout out the Dev who was so kind and answered all my questions. Make sure you follow them on Twitter and Join the Discord so that you are always up to date!

  • Pictures are from the press kit

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