Luminis Review—Familiar Name, Different Game

LuminisTitle

Despite its name, Luminis from Tim Collins has nothing at all to do with Lumines. The only thing they have in common is that both are puzzle games. Instead, Luminis is more of a matching game, with the playing field being made up of squares divided up into wedge-shaped quarters. The goal is to make a square entirely of one color, which is accomplished by a combination of rotating the squares and flipping the wedges from one square to another.

This is done by using the touchscreen. If you hit the center of a square, it rotates. If you hit the edge, it swaps wedges with the adjacent square’s wedge that is touching it. Once a square is all one color, it disappears, the ones above fall, and a new one falls onto the board at the top.

Classic Mode

Classic Mode

Those are the basics of the game, but there are five different game modes. The first mode is Classic, where you have a limited time to score points. Then there is Tetris style, where the cubes fall from above and the goal is to clear them. Link Mode only lets you rotate the squares. I’m not exactly sure how this works, as it’s not explained at all. Clear Mode is like Classic, only new squares don’t fall onto the screen as you pop them. Puzzle Mode randomizes the top half of the screen, and the goal is to move the squares around on the bottom to match it. As time passes, your score goes down.

As if that weren’t enough, each game mode has an extended version that throws two more colors into the mix. So there’s a lot of gameplay value here, though most games are fairly short. It also keeps track of the high scores for each mode.

Tetris Mode

Tetris Mode

As I think I have said in every review of a touch-only game, I have big hands (and fingers) and am not great with touchscreens. The inherent accuracy of the touch in Luminis is good (as opposed to, say, Underline or Panic!), but the area to touch is awfully small. Sometimes when I want to rotate a square, I accidentally swap wedges, and sometimes when I want to do that, I rotate the square. It’s hard not to; the squares are roughly the size of all of my fingers, save my pinky. The menu is even smaller. So, this is probably a game best played on tablets, not phones or even Vitas. I would like to have seen physical controls support.

Clear Mode, Extended

Clear Mode, Extended

Luminis is a very simple game, but it’s pretty fun. You do need to have small fingers, or possibly play it with a stylus. I just would make the wrong move so often it would get frustrating. Is it necessarily the game’s fault? No, but it’s not my fault either, as my hands aren’t that big. Things also could be explained better. On the other hand, the developer went out of his way to add a whole bunch of modes to the game. It’s a decent buy, if you have small fingers.

6/10

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Comments

4 Responses to “Luminis Review—Familiar Name, Different Game”
  1. AxelMill98 says:

    “You do need to have small fingers, or possibly play it with a stylus.”
    …unfortunately, the PSV doesn’t suppport stylos. Its screen only reads the heat.

    Might give it a try… Oh wait. Dang it.

  2. JeremyR says:

    Supposedly a capacitive stylus works on the Vita.

  3. slicer4ever says:

    Hey, thanks for the review mate, i’m glad you enjoyed it=-). PSM makes things a bit difficult to provide several control schemes unfortuantly. without being able to control the On-Screen controller, it intentionally blocks touch input while the Osc is on-screen, and can only be turned off by the user, not through programming.

  4. Denis says:

    AxelMill98 it doesnt read “the heat”, it reads electrical charges/discharges, thats why it’s called a capacitive touchscreen

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