Last Inua is a beautiful and emotional platform adventure game set in a demon-ridden Arctic landscape.
Puzzles and platforms abound
The gameplay in Last Inua is based around negotiating your way to the end of a series of frozen levels. In each, you'll need to jump platforms, bash through ice blocks, and work out how to negotiate various obstacles, which include ghosts, yetis, and toxic black goo.
You control both Ataataq and Hiko and can switch between the two with the touch of an on-screen button. Each will follow the other until they reach an obstacle which they cannot pass themselves. Then it's generally a case of sending one adventurer off to clear a path for the other.
Ataataq is adapted for jumping, bashing through ice, and scaling walls. His offspring Hiko can't do any of this, but has magical powers such as the ability to build bridges, mend things, and fly through certain parts of a level.
There isn't much variety between most of the levels in Last Inua. The wilderness is very similar in each, and the type of puzzles and actions needed to get through don't change much.
An achievable quest
Last Inua is not a complex game to play, and even if you're not used to these type of platform adventure games you'll pick it up very quickly. Some of the puzzles take a bit of thinking (which you often need to do quickly!) but in general it's a game that's easily finishable. In fact, Last Inua is more about enjoying the artwork and the story than being tested by complex gameplay.
Controls in Last Inua are based around an on-screen joypad in the bottom left, and one action button that serves for multiple moves, such as jumping, bashing, or flying. An icon with the character's face allows you to instantly switch between father and son.
Last Inua is a visual treat. The artwork is worthy of an award, with beautifully drawn backgrounds and well realised characters that are really believable. In fact, this means that many of the monsters and demons in Last Inua are a bit too scary for younger children.
The animation is extremely lifelike, although the movement is a bit too slow and this can make Last Inua feel frustratingly sluggish at times.
The sound in Last Inua is almost as impressive as the visuals. The hauntingly emotional classical music score perfectly fits the mood of the game; you could argue it even sets the mood. Sound effects are so realistic that you almost feel like you're out there in the frozen tundra with them.
A frosty story with lots of warmth
Last Inua is probably a bit slow and straightforward for those who like their platform games to be filled with on-screen action at all times. However, the playing experience is unquestionably enticing, and if you're not charmed by it then you must have a pretty cold heart.