Developer & Publisher: Cosmic Void, Ross Joseph Carpenter
Released: October 5, 2022
Requirements: OS: Minimum 64-bit Windows 7, fully patched; Recommended,
64-bit Windows 10
Processor: 2 GHz
Memory: 2 GB RAM
Graphics: Video card with at least 512 MB shared VRAM
Storage: 400 MB available space
This is a modest indie point and click science fantasy adventure.
As summarised from Steam, Princess Love is set to assume the galactic throne of the powerful and prosperous Velayan Empire. Three centuries of peace are threatened when conspirators try to thwart her ascension. She finds herself stranded with her best friend Kel Yakkavan on an interstellar lighthouse... Can they expose the threat and save the empire before time runs out?
The story is Blood Nova’s highpoint. It is an elaborate ride, full of the sorts of concepts and lore you would expect to find in a vast galactic tale. You will have to read it though, as there is no spoken word, slabs of written dialogue appearing across the bottom portion of the screen.
Each location is a static low-res piece of pixel art. You explore them with the mouse, finding hotspots and clicking to see what happens. Collect items and information and open up new locations as you do so.
The graphics are fairly simplistic, and 'cut scenes' are similar. A muted colour pallet suits the space-based nature of things. A soundtrack provided much of the auditory input, but it didn’t really appeal so I turned it way down.
Bottom left is your inventory icon. Click to open and then click an item to try and use it in the game world, or to combine it with other items. The menu is top left where you can save at will. You can't highlight hotspots, but there aren't a lot in each screen although some can be a little close together, so it is worth being thorough. The cursor will be differently coloured if there is more to do at a particular hotspot.
A rudimentary grid-map accessed through an icon bottom right is how you get around. There are no 'exits' within your current scene, although you might be able to 'see' where to go (a door to the next room might be visible for instance). If you want to move to that room, assuming you have done what is required to access it (e.g., discovered the code to the door) you select it on the map and the scene in front of you changes to that room. Ditto the next one/s.
The map shows your current location, as well as the locations that are accessible from where you are. You don't have to move through each of them sequentially if they are visible on the map - just select the one you want and you will be there - but you may have to move e.g., to the room adjacent to the arboretum in order for the map to then make that location available.
There was a bit of back and forth in the exploration, especially when I failed to find something I needed, but that is part and parcel of games like these. The conundrums are generally inventory based, and allowing for some fantastical moments they tend to stay on the right side of the non-sensical boundary. Not always, but it wasn’t a hard game, and a bit of trying a few things tended to move things along. There are a couple of mini-games, one of which I particularly enjoyed, and the need to interpret some information here and there.
Five to six hours with the Princess should see you through.
I played on:
OS: Windows 10, 64 Bit
Processor: Intel i7-9700K 3.7GHz
RAM: Corsair Dominator Platinum RGB DDR4 32GB
Video card: AMD Radeon RX 580 8192MB