First A Spark, Then A Flare

Review by jakey101 on Sunday, March 4th 2012
Click to play Flare

Flare is a game created by lcraniuml


This is my first review since the new system, I tried a few times when emp's BHR were around but failed. So since I'm more active now I though about trying to get some notice around here, and seeing as I like games so much, I thought I could start off by writing reviews on one of my passions. So here I am now about to review a brilliant game on this wonderful website!


Today I'll be reviewing a robot/shooter game, by a well known game creator called, lcraniuml


I'll start off by saying how much I like this game, personally lcraniuml is now one of my favorite game creators all thanks to this game. This game is amazing, and I've never seen any other robot game like Flare, it's the second in a series type thing, the first being Spark. I personally preferred Flare over Spark, because I think Flare is more of a challenge. Both games are short and I believe this is intended, I think that cranium made a bold choice to make this game short, because it cut nearly all the lag out, the robot creator is pretty laggy anyway so I guess it has to be expected. I get the idea that this is a puzzle type game because it has many puzzles and traps to over come, Cran has also used puzzles that have never been seen before, so I liked the idea that there was new puzzle for me to try out, because I always like a game with a fair amount of puzzles.

Game play

Firstly, I'd like to say how very addictive the game play actually is, once you start playing this game I guarantee you won't be able to stop until you get to a suitable distance started, I also died a lot, and you may think this would make the game less addictive, although that's were you'd be wrong. Lcraniuml has worked wonders with this games and has made me want to play more by dying instead of having the opposite effect. So yeah, I died, a lot, but I every time I did I'd go back and try again because gradually you advance through the game. Although I found the game addictive, I also found it quite slow paced, I'm not just basing this on the fact that the robot creator is generally a slow creator anyway, but but at times the play did seem to drag a bit, and there wasn't really any Arty surroundings so there wasn't really much to look at while I was going through the game. I do like the game play overall because the placement was amazing and possibly the best I've ever seen. I also liked the traps and puzzles that you uncover whilst progressing. The game is very hard though, because from the word go you lose nearly all your life and there's no way to avoid it, as much as I try I fail, but I would say there needed to be anymore health added in because this factor was what gave Flare it's edge over it's predecessors.

Puzzles and Traps

This game has quite a lot to talk about in this section, and is certainly my favorite part to write about. For starters the puzzles and traps are quite hard to describe really, there brilliant but there's not a specific word I can use to describe them other than wow really? I know it may sound stupid but this is what made me like the game more than anything else, the way they are placed and set out is just beyond my mind and there always there to drain your life that is already exceedingly low from the games start, so the fact that you have all these puzzles and traps now draining your life boosts that addiction factor, it makes you want more! The only thing I'd have to complain about here would have to be the fact that there wasn't enough, the game is small like spark was, so it doesn't have a large set out which means it was too small for me, I don't mind this fact though because it's a great game, but if lcraniuml is planing on making a third to this series I would suggest to him to make some areas a bit bigger so there's more room for him to add in traps and puzzles because there they play a big part in this game and that's the main reason I'd like to see more because it'd give a overall better play, because with more puzzles and traps it gives the game better play, and at those times when it seems to drag and become slow paced seeing the next puzzles, makes you more involved in the game because it gets you to want to play it more to overcome the next puzzle and advance to the end. Another factor that made the traps and puzzles section truly great was the fact that most of these puzzles and traps were brand new to this game, lcraniuml had created these puzzles specifically for this game, this made it more great because we've never seen them before you have to spend more time trying to overcome them and get past them which yet again adds to that addictive factor. So as an overall on the puzzle and traps side of things I'd congratulate lcraniuml, for adding new ideas and puzzles into the game which word very well with the overall game play and also made the whole game experience a lot better in all.


The enemy placement was outstandingly good, every enemy I came across was in a perfect position to do the maximum amount of damage possible. Despite the fact of there being few enemies, the way they were placed made up for it, the hazards were also greatly placed, and in some cases they would ruin the whole game and cause you to have to start again, by ruining puzzles and setting up traps. From where I got up to I didn't really notice much health, and I think I only found one or two of the little health pills. So a little bit more health would have been nice, just so I could have gone that extra bit further to get a better judgement of the game, I would have also like to have seen a few different types of enemies, because I only saw spiders, robots, and mortars, there may well have been more but I just didn't see then, but I think if lcraniuml had added in too many enemies it would have ruined the game slightly because the robot creator is already a slow creator, and if he'd added in too many enemies it would most likely have caused the creator to stall and lag even more which would have ruined the game play. As a conclusion to the Placement then, yes it was good but a tad more health and a few more enemies (although not an overload of them), would have been added some more excitement to the game. And a differ of enemies would have also been substantial.


This section is just to go over the last few sections that are too small to go to have a whole section to themselves, like lag, difficulty, personal opinion, set out ect. Well to start off with lag, there wasn't really any at all, this was mostly due to the fact that Flare is a small game, but it was intended to be this way and it does in fact work well. It was a little slow but I think that's due to the robot creator, which is renowned for being incredibly slow paced, but other than that it was fine. Difficulty... Well yes, I found it extremely difficult and I would say it's a hard game, but it can be completed so it's not impossible, but I like the fact it was hard anyway because it made me want to play more so it's difficulty worked. Now for the set out, by this I mean the way the overall game was set out and any art that had been added into the scenery. But I have to say here that I did find the lay out to be rather boring... Sure the actually way the game was laid out and the map was created, that area of things was great and added extra difficulty to certain things that should have been a lot easier. But what I'm trying to get at here is that there wasn't really any scenery, I noticed no art or anything that made the game look interesting at all, and I think at times this would have fit in well because there was points when you had to walk a distance and seeing as the robot creator is so slow, art work would have been nice at point just as a little extra to look at whilst you was getting to the next point of action. My personal opinion on this game is that it's brilliant, yes I've grumbled and moaned about it a bit, but a game will get no where without tips for improvement, but there isn't many games here on Sploder that I can say I truly like, but I can say for sure that I love Flare.


Now onto the overall rating of the game, and a short statement about why I've give each section to the game this score.

~Game Play~ ____/_____:

Well the game play was great in my opinion, and I can truly say I liked it, although I didn't give top marks because like I said it did drag at points, so some little extras at times would have definitely fit in, and also been a nice little addition seeing as the scenery was in fact rather plain.

~Puzzles and Traps~ ____/_____:

This was my favorite part of the entire game, so that's the reason I'm giving it such a high mark. I loved the new puzzles and traps that lcraniuml has obviously spent time on creating, because this was one of the main addictive factors to the entire game, and without all the puzzles and traps for you to get your head around it would have been tilted back onto the rather slow side of the game.

~Placement~ ____/_____:

Like above, without the pretty amazing placement of enemies and health alike the game would have dragged, but the enemies in this game were amazingly placed so throughout the whole game you'd be dreading an encounter with an enemy, because you'd know that you'd be dealt damage no matter what the out come.

~Difficulty~ ____/_____:

Yes the difficulty was amazingly hard, although I've give it a high rating because it worked well with the game and if it had been less difficult the game wouldn't of had such a big an effect as it did.

~Scenery~ __/_____:

Very bland, there wasn't really anything at all that stood out and Was no art work around to keep you occupied, and at some points I think it was a must have to keep you interested in the game and want to play onwards.

~Personal rating~ _____/_____:

Yet again another high rating because like I keep on saying, I truly enjoyed this game. Despite the things I've had a moan about and all the times I've said about how bad I thought the scenery was, this is still an amazing game, and is certainly one of my all time sploder favorites and I'd like to say a big thanks to lcraniuml for giving me such a great game to play, and then review. So thanks. :)

~Overall~ ____/_____:

To concluded I think Flare is well worthy of it's feature and deserves it place on the feature pages, and yes I'd even go as far to say it deserves a place in the EGL, because I personally find this game amazing, I hope there's a third release for this series and I hope it's a bit longer than Flare, but until next time my friends, Adios!