When you’ve played enough indie titles over time it’s hard not to get a bit cynical when you see certain elements in games. For whatever reason the more hand-drawn black and white style that Ender Lilies uses is one that I’ve been burned on before so I approached it with some hesitation. I’m happy to say that it pretty quickly shattered my concerns with well-worn platforming and slashing, some smart level design, and a story that caught my attention a bit more than usual. Throw in progression with new weapon choices, skills, and growth and it’s much more than a pretty face. Even the games enemy bosses, which often can end up feeling generic or unfair or flawed in some way and bring games like this down feel well-designed and tough but beatable, giving the game a great middle-of-the-road difficulty rather than trending in the direction many have chosen of late of shooting for a “Souls-like” experience by setting up a damage sponge with lackluster design and calling it a day. Mixing together a unique and generally gorgeous art style, classic Metroidvania play, and a story that manages to at least be a bit of a surprise, Ender Lilies arrived on the Switch without much fanfare to announce it, but leaves you with a memorable experience.
Justin Nation, Score:
Nindie Choice! [8.0]