Spirit Hearts is 2D puzzle-shooter game built for Ludum Dare 34 where you play as a spirit named Night as he explores the strange and mystical towers of the Spirt World on his quest to collect the much coveted Spirit Hearts.
As you float through the hauntingly beautiful, pixellated world, you’ll encounter evil spirits wandering the lonely halls of the tower. Fortunately for you, you’ll be able to use your spirit powers to fire bursts of energy at your attackers, thus avoiding a grisly demise at their ghostly hands. Controls are kept tight and responsive, making blasting away mobs of enemies incredibly satisfying. Also, in order to bypass certain obstacles, you’ll need put your psychic powers to work as you move objects around the world, unlocking doors and disarming traps.
As you advance through the stage, Spirit Hearts does an excellent job of silently getting you acclimatized to each new puzzle or mechanic, no tutorial boxes required. The only issue in its game design crops up around the introduction of the laser beams. In order to slip by them, you will need to hold a box in place to block the beams, but as you move, your mouse selection moves with you, thus unblocking the laser and frying your little spirit into the afterafterlife. A little tweaking to the dragging power would solve that issue handily.
For a game built in only 72 hours, Spirit Hearts is incredibly polished. The cool tone of the color palette is wonderful and each explosion is accompanied by crispy, juicy particle effects. The choice of soundtrack is spot-on with its medieval-style symphonic metal evoking a distinctively Castlevania feeling (which the game then channels with its metroidvania-style backtracking and branching paths). With a endscreen promising “To Be Continued”, we can’t wait to see what other spooky and cute updates Spirit Hearts has in store.