Game of the Month - April 2014 - Child of Light

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See our Game of the Month winner for April 2014
Happy to be sad.

After the cacophony that was March, with its enthusiastic reminders of how explosive and intense games can be, the quietude of April was a welcome reprieve. The slow trickle of releases forced us to savor each offering. We spent countless hours willing our Trials Fusion riders to stay upright, striving for record times as we incessantly belted out the lyrics to the electric opening theme. And we devoured The Wolf Among Us: A Crooked Mile, relishing each telling growl as this fantastical story infected our very beings. April was that kind of month, a time to dissect each game and to lose ourselves in their enticing worlds.

But it was Child of Light that had the most profound effect on us. The dreamlike artistic design danced before us, and, coupled with the melodic piano score, captivated our senses in uncommon ways. There's a deep sorrow in Child of Light, borne of the utter hopelessness of a land smothered by totalitarian rule. And so we opened our hearts to this strange place and, in turn, felt as one with its citizens as we took a personal interest in their determined struggles.

There's a remarkable maturity present in Child of Light. You can see it in its firm confidence, how it so expertly conjures difficult emotions instead of shying away from them. There's a united focus that's incredibly rare. The dialogue is so defeated, and the landscape is so barren, that you feel the weight of all of the problems of this land, and want nothing more than to bring a little happiness to those who are hurting so. And that's why the shift when you enter battle, when you finally set aside the overbearing difficulties consuming you and focus on the immediate threat, is such a relief. All of your pent-up emotions can be unleashed in a swell of anger as you overcome the enemies before you.

Child of Light is so soft-spoken that you have to lean in close to hear what it's saying. But it lifted our spirits despite its sorrowful mood, and reminded us what it's like to be human. That's a singular achievement in the realm of video games, when so many games eagerly transport us away from ourselves, and we are thankful that such a powerful mirror into our own hearts exists.