Celeste Dev Explains How They Made Their Game Feel So Good
One of Celeste's designers has shared some of the cool tricks they employed to make the Switch, PS4, Xbox One, and PC platformer shine.
Celeste is one of the most critically beloved indie games of this console generation, thanks to its smart mechanics, beautiful soundtrack, and challenging-but-fair gameplay and level design. It's the sort of small, polished experience that a lot of obvious thought and care went into--and now, thanks to a Twitter thread from one of the game's designers, we have some more insight into how it all works.
Matt/Maddy Thorson, one of the game's designers, has posted a thread of "game-feel things" that they built into Celeste, explaining the allowances the game makes for players and how they made the game more enjoyable to play. As Thorson admits in the first tweet, these aren't necessarily new concepts or ideas they invented--just mechanics that fit into Celeste well.
A short thread on a few Celeste game-feel things :) I don't think we invented any of these.— Matt / Maddy Thorson 🍂 (@MattThorson) March 13, 2020
1- Coyote time. You can still jump for a short time after leaving a ledge. pic.twitter.com/nMK9ZLYbhM
In their thread, Thorson shared a total of 10 examples of "game-feel" from Celeste. In the first example below, "coyote time," players can still make their jump for a moment after leaving the ledge--just like Wile E. Coyote.
Other examples given in the full thread include jump buffering (allowing you to jump, then jump again on the exact frame you land by holding down the jump button), jump corner correction (a mechanic that allows you to avoid bumping Madeline's head when jumping into objects) and lift momentum storage (when jumping from a fast-moving platform transfers momentum to your jump).
It's a cool thread, and a great reminder to go back to Celeste for the post-launch Farewell DLC that released last year.
In GameSpot's 9/10 review of Celeste, Oscar Dayus praised the game for its story and gameplay. "It's a testament to convincing writing and ingenious design that after playing Celeste I felt like I'd been on the same journey as Madeline. Her struggle is one made easy to empathize with, her low points painful to watch, and her high notes exhilarating to experience. Her tale is delicately told and beautifully illustrated, confidently coalescing with the satisfying, empowering game it lies within."
If you're a long-time Xbox Live Gold subscriber, odds are that you have the game on Xbox One--it's definitely worth playing.
For more on how games are made, check out GameSpot's Audio Logs series--we talk to the folks behind games like Disco Elysium, Control, Devil May Cry 5, and Death Stranding. Our video on Dead Cells, and how it similarly employs tricks to keep you going, is above.
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