It’s kind of hard to review a game that is really short yet intensely immersive. The colors and overall style of play can keep anyone in a trance for hours. Child of Eden is one of those games that can keep an entire room full of people entertained but is no more then one player at a time. Tetsuya Mizuguchi set himself up to make a spiritual successor to Rez and he does but before you know it the game ends.
Child of Eden essentially is about the child of the evolutionary state of the internet named Eden. Corrupt data has captured her and you need to save her before it’s to late. The story itself doesn’t make much sense as you play along but you quickly realize while playing that it doesn’t really matter. The game hooks you from the minute you start up the first level.
It’s an on-rails first person shooter which gives you the ability to either lock-on to multiple enemies or rapid fire. Each time you fire it goes along with the trance/techno music in the game and it gets addicting fast. Each stage shapes and manifests itself into something different from start to finish. Never getting repetitive along its first play through. As you progress through the stages the game gets significantly harder and faster. Prepare to die a number of times if your timing is not on point when getting through the later stages. They’ve even made it a note to only unlock the final stages when you get a certain amount of stars within each one. I do want to note that we mainly played the game with Kinect and although it can be played with a controller the experience is just not the same without the Kinect.
The visual style of the game resembles Rez closely but is in itself is very engaging. It also knew when to let me appreciate the surroundings areas within the game which has some great detail in it. Child of Eden’s biggest downfall is its length. With less then a handful of stages, the game feels like it ends right when it begins. That’s not to say there aren’t unlockables but this almost feels like a teaser for something grand in the works.
Child of Eden is an experience like no other. From the minute you play you won’t be able to put it down. The game can be beaten in a few hours but unlockables, leaderboards and a challenge mode keep the game from ending entirely. While the game is not exclusive to the Kinect censor it is probably the definitive experience to play with it. Hopefully more is in the pipeline for Child of Eden as I’m all but done with exploring this world.