We're happy to finally show off Cloudbuilt, a child of the 8-bit era's action platformers and today's Third Person Shooters. Cloudbuilt seamlessly combine old-school moves like dash, double jumping and charge beams with modern moves like rocket jumping, wall running, and and strafe-dodging.
Practice is a central theme of Cloudbuilt. Many modern games seem not to trust you with its potential until you've gained its trust, and therefore spoon-feed you new abilities over the course of the game. Cloudbuilt lets you play with all skills from the moment you begin. You won't need to master them all right away, but to complete the game and beat the records for each level you will be challenged to use what you've learned in creative ways. If you feel that the head-shaped hole in the wall is getting to deep there are usually multiple levels unlocked at any time to choose from.
Freedom and experimentation is another central theme. In Cloudbuilt there isn't one predetermined correct path that you must take through a level. Sure, there are paths that are more obvious, but for the attentive players there's also the possibility to carve their own path. In a level there are usually multiple ways to pass an obstacle, and possibly some that we don't know of yet.
The events take place in the mind of the protagonist, a damaged war-vet who has, in some unspecified future, been severely injured. Quickly learning she's been "repaired", we follow her mental process from confused to reaching a conclusion.
You probably wonder how this looks in action. So, without further ado, here's the first trailer!
Cloudbuilt features several moves worth mentioning. Let's start with a few of the cooler ones (those who've followed us from Ovelia: The Wake might recognize these):
Using your boosters while running along a wall give you an extra bit of power to go farther, but it will also propel you upwards. To counteract for this you need to learn how to wave boost by timing when and for how long to keep the boosters active. This is useful not only for getting straight across a wall, but also to avoid obstacles sticking out above or beneath you.
There is a tactical side to this as well. Just putting the, metaphorical, pedal to the metal will drain your energy reserves very quickly, so by being smart about when to boost and in how big bursts you use the boosters can have a big effect on how far you can get. Energy is the resource that powers all the cool stuff that you can do, so if you waste it all you will need to wait for it to charge back up, but with control you will never have to stop for anything.
Dashing is a multi-purpose skill used for shaving a few more seconds off that high-score, reaching otherwise inaccessible areas or, sometimes, both at the same time. It's a skill you will need to master in order to beat the records for levels is dashing. It's one of those multi-tool skills that can allow you to shave of those last seconds of the score or allow you to reach that extra distance.
Dashing can be used on the ground or in the air, all depending on when you need it. You can fire of those boosters on the straights and zoom along at record speed; or you can follow a dash with a jump, skipping those last few platforms and fly into a wall run.
However, everything has a price.
Dashing consumes a chunk of energy when used, which opens up some tactics for the speed runner to figure out when it is the right time to dash and when not to. You might save a few seconds by dashing across that platform, but if you've depleted your energy you might need to stop when you reach that big wallrun and thereby lose precious seconds.
The question you will repeatedly ask yourself is, "If I Dash here, But will I still have enough energy to clear the rest of the obstacles?"