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A lot of RPG games boast stunning 3-D graphics and vivid gameplay environments, but Lili sets a new standard. This adventure game features a main character who’s tasked with completing some challenging find-and-retrieve tasks on a very beautiful and mysterious island, one populated with strange beings in possession of a very quirky brand of humor.
In other words, when the game isn’t making you work hard to lock in the next achievement, or making your eyes widen at the sight of detailed characters and lush island scenery, it will have you chuckling to yourself in amusement. Let’s take a look.
Storyline and Characters
Lili is a student — she’s working on her vegi-magical degree — whose professor has sent her to the island of Geos to collect a number of magical flowers pertinent to the completion of her studies. Sounds simple, right? But Lili is hindered in her quest by the various island residents called Constructs and Spirits.
Constructs are agreeable creatures who look as though they’ve been haphazardly put together with found objects from a workman’s toolshed. Some of them will give Lili extra tasks, or help her along the way by offering up various gameplay tips or other useful information. Plus they provide funny commentary in their interactions with the young adventurer.
For example, one Construct called Letterman, aka Mailbot (he was crafted from a partial mailbox, among other materials), remarks to Lili, “You’re pretty cool for a thing with skin and all.” Later he tells her, “I was going to buy a coffee, but bought three games instead.” And an envelope delivered to Lili features the stamp: “Opened, Read and Re-Sealed by Mailbot.”
It should be noted that Letterman features a graphic on his front side that is a clear shoutout to the Angry Birds family of games. And as you wander around the island, you may come across signs and posters that, if you look closely, feature more tongue-in-cheek references and messages from the developers.
If Constructs are helpful, then Spirits are the opposite, and the two groups do not get along. The Spirits, the Constructs tell Lili, “are jerks.” The island’s Spirits are also major obstacles in Lili’s path to collecting all the rare and magical flowers she needs.
Spirits, however, are just as amusing as their counterparts. Players who bother to read the Spirits’ profile cards (which pop up after interactions with Lili) will be rewarded with some completely random background information. For example, the Spirit named Aspen was apparently an extra in a movie once.
Maneuvering Lili around the island is a snap. Tap once to walk, tap twice to run, tap anywhere on the screen to make her stop. Make small swipes left or right to adjust her direction while she’s running or walking. And simply pull your finger across the screen in any direction to alter the view and take a look around.
A question mark in the upper left displays current and long-term objectives, with tabs along the bottom of the screen for viewing Lili’s acquired skills, friends (the Constructs she’s met so far), Spirits she’s interacted with, treasures she’s found on the island (examples include a volleyball and a flute), a map of the island and the game’s settings.
The map is dynamic in that it shows the locations of the Constructs and Spirits on the island, even as they are moving, in addition to Lili’s own location. From the map display you can also view other important information, such as the number of coins collected, keys discovered, treasure chests opened, Spirits defeated, flowers found and plucked, and clay pots broken.
Scattered across the island are many locked doors, making it necessary for Lili to acquire keys throughout her adventure. You earn coins by breaking clay pots hidden around the island, and can spend these at Shoppington for potions and other tools necessary for defeating Spirits.
To collect the magical flowers Lili needs, it’s necessary for her to chase down and then jump onto a Spirit’s back. Because Spirits have different strengths and weaknesses, it’s a good idea to have a number of special Shoppington items on hand to be at Lili’s disposal when needed.
My only complaint about Lili is that it’s riddled with typos and grammatical errors — not necessarily deal-breaker type of stuff regarding my enjoyment level, but definitely something that’s a little distracting.
Overall, not only is this game beautiful, funny and rich in content, it’s flexible, too. There are three different levels of difficulty, so you can bump it down a notch if your kid wants to play, or you can kick it up a notch if you decide things are getting too easy. Plus, as you play you gain access to additional areas around the island, unlocking new content and places for exploration to keep the fun going.
I would recommend this game to players of all ages, especially fans of adventure, RPG and other iOS games that feature colorful fantasy worlds. I absolutely can’t wait to see Lili on the iPhone 5 — I’ve seen and heard good things.