Along the Microsoft E3 booth were a variety of Summer of Arcade titles out for people to try. I immediately was drawn to Dust: An Elysian Tail. I hadn’t heard of this title previously and a quick google search shows me that it is the brainchild of Humble Hearts Studios. Dust: An Elysian Tail was previously a Dream.Build.Play winner in 2009.
You play as Dust who is a fox I think. The website says that Dust is trying to liberate an oppressed village, and rediscover his past. He is accompanied by Fidget, his sidekick who actually does help in combat. In the demo, I got a look at the very funny dialog that occurs between Dust and Fidget. Hopefully that is a sign of something that carries throughout the game.
The 2D action games has beautiful graphics. I saw mentioned that this game was hand painted by the creator. Which only explains why it’s so beautiful.
The combat and gameplay are also amazing. The attack combos are made simple. Dust can chain together attacks and to be honest, I spent more time with an air attack then other attacks. There were also hints during the game for new combo attacks. Fidget has an attack where he shoots balls of energy. If you hold Y after Fidget throws the energy balls, you can use the Dust Storm attack to pick up the energy balls throwing it in all directions and adding to your kill count.
While there are many combos and attacks to learn, don’t feel overwhelmed. Learning the attacks feels natural and you can stick with the attacks that you feel comfortable with.
Having only played one area, I can’t say for sure how the game will play out. But I can say that after the demo, I’m very interested in trying out Dust: an Elysian Tail. There is no release date, but it will be part of Microsoft’s Summer of Arcade promotion this year.