Sky: Light Awaits takes you back to childhood dreams, hand in hand with friends
The team behind Journey delivers beta version of a new game that feels very much finished
As the name suggests, this game is all about light: You play as children in a dreamy, bright landscape above the clouds. Darkness has descended on many parts of the world, and it’s your job to bring light to them with the candles in your hands.
But what makes this game great is the way it encourages you to interact with other gamers. Some of the puzzles require multiple players to solve. And unlike other games where you add friends by searching their names or handles, in Sky you meet people by running into them face to face.
Players you haven’t met before appear half-transparent. If you offer them a candle, and they give theirs back to you: Congratulations, you’re friends now! They now look different to you. You can name each other, give out high-fives, share conversations, and fly together holding hands.
That’s how we met our friend. Her real name is Alen, but we didn’t find out until later so we called her Namigod at first.
Namigod told me offline that it has become a tradition for players to help newbies in the game.
“People in the game are generally very friendly and nice, that’s part of the reason I love it,” she said. “I was coached by a Japanese girl myself when I first got into it.”
That mentorship is a key part of the game. While the puzzles are usually straightforward and simple, navigating the vast open landscape -- which consists of seven chapters -- can be a confusing experience. There isn’t a clear route: You can choose to go straight and light up all the stone statues; but you can also just wander around and collect items. Having a more experienced player like Namigod to guide us definitely helped.
Sky is still in beta, but other than some small lags at the start, it looks very well polished. The graphics and animation are smooth and detailed, and the music is stunning. Apparently you can also play your own song in the game.