Flicker of the flame was developed for the Fire game jam hosted by CUGameDev. The jam guidelines were quite simple, make a game about fire, and Flicker of the flame used this theme and created a short platformer where you play as a flame trying to get out of a tree.
As a flame, you burn stuff. Due to platforming relying on you physically landing a jumping off of platforms, being a fire is very unhelpful. In Flicker of the flame, every platform you touch slowly burns away, and once it completely burns, the platform vanishes and makes your platforming tasks quite harder. The visual effect of seeing the platforms burn away is quite neat to look at, but the actual effect it has on the difficulty of the platforming is quite small. This hurts the experience by not taking full advantage of the burning mechanic.
Flicker of the flame can be completed in around thirty seconds due to the lack of any obstacles and the fast pace of the platforming, and this means that you will probably not be able to see the platforms fully burn away unless you are interested in seeing how the mechanic works. It takes around five seconds for one square of the platform to fully burn away, and if you spend that long on a single piece of a platform, then you are having a very rough time with the jumps.
I really enjoy the idea of Flicker of the flame and believe that even though completing it fastly does take away some of the charm of seeing the burning effects, that it doesn’t necessarily make the game any less fun. The jumps are tight sometimes making the platforming challenging and fun.
The art of Flicker of the flame is also quite pleasant to view, and although it runs in a window that is quite small, the aesthetic is still very cute and somewhat detailed. The starting menu is also the credits, and it looked a little cluttered at first, but that is a very minor criticism, and the ending scene was quite a nice way to end the short and sweet game.
The music is also quite nice, it is a simple melody with about a 1:15 run time, which means that it won’t repeat during playthroughs. The music is made up of string instruments, and it really doesn’t build up to anything great, which doesn’t add to the plot of ascending up a tree, but it still has calming qualities.
Flicker of the flame is a very small game that took the theme of fire and made an interesting platformer that takes the common usage of disappearing platforms from other platforming titles and adds their own flair to it. The experience was one that I greatly recommend, and it is easily replayable if you want to take thirty seconds out of your day to replay it.
You can download Flicker of the flame here!