Ori and the Blind Forest is one of the most beautiful Xbox One games yet

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Some of the biggest games of 2015 look absolutely amazing, but if you haven’t taken notice of Ori and the Blind Forest, it’s about time you did. In it, you play as Ori, an animal-like forest spirit (he honestly looks like a Super Saiyan Stitch) with supernatural powers and a Zelda-like Navi friend named Sein (like ‘sign’). The entire world map is laid out like a Metroid game, meaning the environments are open to explore, new abilities unlock areas, and backtracking is a must if you’re a completionist.

The environment I recently played through is called the Forlorn Ruins and features some mind-bending gravity puzzles. Most of the platforming is already pretty challenging, but this are takes the cake. Ori happens upon a glowing orb, which allows him to walk on walls. Depending on whether you’re standing on a wall or ceiling, the gravity of the entire area will adjust; jumping off an edge can send you falling up, down, left, or right (often into a bed of spikes). On top of that, the controls don’t flip with your position, so going left when you want to go right is definitely a struggle you’ll have to overcome.

Every time I see Ori and the Blind Forest it gets more and more impressive. The hand-painted look of the art is gorgeous, and the precise platforming controls are top notch. The platforming sections I’ve played have been a blast to tackle, and the new puzzles introduce gravity elements that I’ve never seen in any other game begore. It’ll be interesting to see what other surprises the full game has in store.

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