(I meant to post this sooner, but I forgot)
Three out of five.
Dust: An Elysian… What can I say? It’s a beautiful game. The gameplay is enjoyable, the art style is absolutely gorgeous, and the music gets me all emotional. The whole game does, really.
The Blackmoor Mountains are the obligatory winter level. From a level design standpoint, Dust: An Elysian is pretty… classic. Which I feel like I’ve mentioned before, but I can’t recall. Oops. Well, anyway, that pretty much means it’s got a forest level, a cave level, a graveyard level, a fire level, etc… And this, again, is the winter level.
It’s a beautiful level, but also one I usually find more difficult than what comes before it (I don’t find the game itself particularly hard, but winter levels in general always manage to destroy me, so I guess it’s tradition). Ah well, there’s beauty in the challenge, right?
The track itself fits every part of the level, I feel. From the icy caverns, to the snow that crunches underneath every footstep… I can even hear the sounds of Ahrah clashing with the monsters and other enemies that wander, as well as the sound of Dust flapping his “wings” to gain just a little more oomph to reach that platform…
A strong sense of wonder with maybe a bit of holiday cheer (the bells get me wistful for the holiday season), but yet also a sense of isolation and loneliness, if a bit weak. It’s just Dust, Fidget, and Ahrah against the harsh environment and the monsters that lie within, yet this theme and even the level itself brings me a sense of peace.
One of my favorite tracks, one of my favorite levels, from one of my favorite games.