In this challenging platformer you get to be a cat named Bast. Your best friend (owner?), a girl, is whisked away by a creature akin to grim reaper and you have find her. To do this you have to run, jump and crawl through 100 levels of increasing difficulty, all with high contrast graphics similar to Limbo.
There are actually three different kinds of levels. In all of them you have to reach the light at the end of the obstacle course of a level. Cat levels are the most numerous of the bunch. They are the basic platforming levels where you, the cat, can run, jump and wall-jump through the dungeons filled with lethal spikes, playful porcupines, levitating spike balls and moving saw blades and spear traps. Later on there are crumbling, disappearing and reappearing, occasionally sharp-edged platforms to watch out for and also happy swinging giant spiders and cannons with both regular and homing bullets to dodge. Spiky death is pretty much guaranteed.
Second kinds of levels are the girl levels. Girl is trapped in a spirit world, filled with (surprise!) spikes and saw blades and other lethal things I already mentioned. However, for an unknown reason she can jump to the ceiling and back at will. This being the only thing she can do the game pumps a lot of levels out of the simple movement mechanics and both stationary and moving traps.
The third and the most frustrating level type (for me) are the cave levels. In these the cat moves with the same jump-up-and-down mechanics as the girl but running constantly. Precision jumps are easy enough in the early levels but later on they have to be made within a tiny fraction of a second, quickly accumulating tiring deaths. Sometimes you also have to crawl under deathly spikes, bullets or those sneaky, swigging spiders. Frankly, I disliked the cave levels a lot because the speed makes the imperfect hitboxes significant. Also, why must Bast suddenly run when s/he was fine with careful jumps before? Fortunately, there are only some 20 cave levels, so they are in the minority.
Most levels are quite short, lasting just some 10-20 seconds. You get an achievement for par-timing all levels, which is fairly difficult but gets easier as you learn to control both characters. There's also a shiny collectable in each level. Cave running levels don't have par-times, instead requiring you to beat them on the first go. That sounds evil but it's a bluff because you can just try the level again from the level selection screen after each failure to try again.
After beating the game there are ten more challenge (cat platforming) levels to beat that are even more difficult than the story levels. Fortunately they are not required for the acquirement of the ultimate achievement: Ninja Cat. To get that you have to beat the game without dying more than 10 times. It's a very difficult and frustrating achievement despite that you can beat the game in around half an hour.
Unfortunately, the last few of the cave running levels have speed sections that lag the game to a halt, making it jerky with a framerate less than 10. This makes those very precision-heavy levels virtually unplayable. I know this is a problem with my system but I have tried the game on three different computers, a laptop and two desktops, all of which have this same problem (and AMD Radeon type cards that are probably to blame). It makes the Ninja Cat tries a true pain. For some reason the levels work alright when I first start the game but not if I play through all the levels.
All in all, A Walk in the Dark is a very challenging platformer. Granted, sometimes the deaths become really annoying as the hitboxes don't exactly match the graphics, but it's worth its present price (6 €) and can often be grabbed for half that on a sale.