Celeste looks cute simple and quite quick but actually that changes quite quickly. Let’s explain. When you start Celeste you see the work put into the music and the details. You start the first area, the prologue and get use to running, jumping and climbing. Once you learn about the dash, experienced gamers just know it’s about to get more complicated.
The first actual level is not even easy. You must learn to control yourself while in the air, time your dashes and interactive with some mechanics that’s exclusive to this level. You learn that Celeste definitely requires precision and timing. Spikes in abundance to punish all mistakes and even a spring trap that launches you into death. You learn the hard way that there’s no mercy in Celeste. Each level has their own mechanic which players have to master. Trust us when we say, learn them now.
In every level players can initially aim for certain things. Off course beat the level, collect all the strawberries, find the blue crystal heart and find the B-side tape. The B side tape is medium difficulty in our opinion, a few are well hidden while most just requires you to look around. Collecting all the strawberries is hard as they are in places that tests the players skill and ability to use your available action in the right order, most of the time. The crystal hearts though are a different story. They are basically tricks. You either know the trick or you’ll never get them. The first one requires you to dash in certain directions in a specific order. You know what direction based on the direction the colour coded birds are moving and you get the order from the machine which keeps flashing the same colours in the same order. Cryptic right? We know!
The game tells you that the strawberries don’t do anything and that’s a lie. We at X35 Earthwalker hate lies! You have youtubers and big review companies agreeing and saying they don’t do anything too. Just shows how inexperienced and not good at paying attention they are. The strawberries actually only have an effect at the end of the game. When you complete it, your character will bake a strawberry cake for certain guests. How much strawberries you collect will effect the selfie that Theo takes and the dialogue. If you hardly collected any, then it will be a plain cake and the guests will look confused, disappointed and even skeptical of whether it still counts as a strawberry cake or not. If you collect all of them then the cake is loaded with strawberries everywhere and everyone looks like they are having the time of their life or completely amazed. They also give some serious compliments. So go get those strawberries.
Once you beat the game, your next challenge is to take on the B side of the levels which you unlock with the B side tapes. Let us warn you now. This is where the fun stops. You thought the reflection and summit levels were hard then you aren’t ready. B side is basically a much harder version of the level you played. More spikes, less mercy and more death. You will fail and die, again and again. Many players have given up because of the B side levels and they are crazy. They force players to get good or git gud. Every trick you have learnt and every combination will be used here. There’s no way around it. The levels are as long as the original but when you see what the game wants you to do to get through it, you just have to say “come on Celeste… This isn’t fair”. Once you figure out what the game wants you to do though, it’s only a matter of time before you execute it right and get it done. These levels aren’t impossible. You need all the crystal hearts and hearts you get for beating B side to challenge the B side of the chapter 8 ‘the core’. What we haven’t seen though is a video of the developers beating these B side levels. We bet they can’t. Now if you beat all the B side levels you can call yourself a Pro level Celeste player.
Congratulations you beat the B side levels. You can rest now… actually you can’t. What? You thought you was done? Nope! Beating all the B side levels and finding all the crystal hearts will allow you to challenge the C side levels. C side are the real deal. They are completely unfair, punishing levels that only the best can beat. They are harder than B side but much shorter than B side. The most is three rooms while there are some with almost only two rooms. Each room requires all the tricks and at times including the new trick you learnt from the B side level of Summit. That’s one thing we hate. Celeste teaches the players a new trick at the end of the game and they then expect you to master it and use it for the rest of the levels and challenges ahead, instantly. C levels are so tough that only 0.64% of all the Celeste players on the Xbox One have beaten them all! The last C side level is brutal but fair and that’s how all the challenges should have been but some felt very chance based especially with some mechanics like the clouds and getting the exact timing. The last level is the longest room in the game with all the mechanics from the previous levels and no check points. You can watch how X35 Earthwalker, the legendary soldier himself took on this level.
As you complete the different challenges in Celeste, your ticket (your save file) gets different stamps on it. When you beat the game, you get a mountain top flag stamp. When you get all the strawberries you get the strawberry stamp, another thing the strawberries do (the strawberries don’t do anything… liars). When you beat all the B sides you get a heart stamp but when you beta all the C sides you get another heart stamp. Fill your cards up with stamps and feel proud of yourself. Also the last challenge in our opinion is to now get all the Celeste achievements which are reasonable. You can also collect the golden strawberries but after beating C side, you start to get fed up with the game. It’s fun to play from time to time but the difficulty and what you go through makes you want to finally put it down when you are done.
Overall Celeste is very difficult and requires a lot to master. There are unlockables and challenges that most gamers just can’t do. There’s a lot to like about this game. The characters stand out and are very different and weird in their own way. Theo keeps taking selfies. The music is very well done and the story is something that you have to pay attention too otherwise you won’t really get it. Now Celeste may have a special mountain that effects those who climb it but this mountain cannot stand before… the ‘Earth Walk!’
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