Apogee Entertainment had just announced their recent game, LUCID, earlier this morning. Labeled as a "Celestevania," LUCID combines the tight free-flowing platforming movements of Celeste and the adventurous exploration of Castlevania. Having recently checked out Turbo Overkill, I was excited to learn that Apogee was publishing another retro-inspired game. This time being developed by the creative minds at The Matte Black Studio, their first ever published game.
The game was developed as a love letter to various classic 2D platformers. These include the Mega Man X series, Super Metroid, and The Legend Of Zelda: A Link To The Past. LUCID's is set in the world of Aedyn, ladened with crystals, and set after the events of the Great Fall. Following the fall of the Lucid Giant, only the last remaining Sentinels have the power to restore balance to Aedyn. The player plays as one such Sentinel, Oenn, tasked to restore the Lucid Giant and eliminate the threat.
Players are expected to solve puzzles using their platforming abilities while uncovering the lore of Aedyn and look good while doing it. Watching the trailer, I was reminded of another indie platformer I'm closely following which is Berserk Boy. The interconnectivity between fluid platforming gameplay and an enriching story is reminiscent of Apogee's early ventures, including Commander Keen.
While it's not exactly a one-to-one comparison, seeing Apogee return to their platforming roots with LUCID as they had returned to their classic FPS roots with Turbo Overkill is like ushering in a new era of their legacy. Not only that, but it gives up-and-coming developers a chance to live their dreams of developing the games they wish to create.
In terms of this writer, LUCID became a personal interest of mine the moment I realized that Matte Black Studio was not only based in New York but in Brooklyn, my hometown. Seeing local creative talent such as this makes it a no-brainer to support. 1 UP Infinite will personally follow the project and hope to get a deeper hands-on experience in the near future!
LUCID is slated for a 2024 release, here are some more screenshots to help whet the appetite. Players can also wishlist on Steam to keep up to date with release date announcements.