I got this game gifted to me, and was really happy to be able to try it out. I like having games I can play when I want more casual, relaxing gameplay, and PixelJunk Eden serves this purpose very, very well.
If you like artsy, atmospheric platformers with good pacing, then you will really enjoy this game.
The aesthetics are spectacular! The artstyle and background is very refreshing - the theme is plants in a garden (in a variety of colors depending on the level). The sounds and music are very good and add to the relaxing atmosphere emitted by the game.
The controls are fairly simple and easy to learn - instructions are given whenever a new mechanic is introduced. The tutorial is quick and painless - your primary objective is to find these special items throughout the level. The learning curve is minimal - the most you have to worry about is completing your objective before your time runs out, however, it is quite easy to obtain the collectibles that increase your time limit.
During gameplay, there are various pollen-like objects floating around the area, and hitting them will cause the pollen particles to float toward the nearest "plant-budding" area. When enough pollen has accumulated within the circle, touching it with your character will cause a plant to sprout. These structures are essential because your character can stick to any part of the plant, allowing you to jump/move to higher areas. Later, you will unlock a rappel ability, allowing you to swing for a finite amount before propelling yourself in a particular direction. Furthermore, if your rope touches any time-increasing collectibles or pollen-objects, they will automatically be collected.
You have a time limit, and collecting certain items will increase your limit by a few bars (the larger object will refill it by a great deal). As you progress through the game, you will also unlock a teleport-reset ability (very useful for when you accidentally fall a large distance), however, using this requires you to spend a portion of your time limit gauge.
As you collect more of the spectra (level completion) items, you will eventually unlock more gardens. Interestingly, whenever you first unlock a new garden, you MUST complete at least one portion of that new garden (get the first spectra item). Also, as you unlock more gardens, the appearance of the main menu area will liven up with beautiful plant-like structures. There are also various random hint nodes all across the menu that you can move to in order to receive fairly-helpful advice.
Overall, if you are into atmospheric platformers with a unique artstyle, you must try out this game.
DJSF @DJSF's Rogue Reviews