The first thing you need to know is that Lili: Child of Geos is a PC port of the iOS game, Lili. It’s not a lazy port – the developers have added controller support, redone the UI, and added additional NPCs and quests. They’ve removed every trace of in app purchasing. As an adventure game with RPG elements and one hell of a sense of humor, it works, even though you can still clearly see the mobile origins around the edges.
I cannot figure out the target audience for the game though. Part of me feels like this is a game aimed at younger children, and part of me feels like it’s aimed at folks who did too much acid in the sixties. See those rainbow puddles? That’s bird excrement, people. The birds of Geos poop rainbows. You’re going to be doing favors for wooden constructs, and jumping on the back of spirits to pick flowers. At this point, I think most people have probably already bounced off or are already buying the game, but for the few still reading, I’ll continue.
Lili has gone to the island of Geos, rumored to be abandoned, to research the plants that grow there for a school project. What she finds are talking fish people, wooden automatons, and creepy mask-wearing spirits. Trainer, one of the constructs, enlists her in their conflict with the spirit ruling class by letting her know that the best flowers grow on the backs of spirits, and as a bonus, picking these flowers happens to vanquish them. What a fantastic coincidence, right?
And these spirits aren’t very nice … well, spirits, so the idea of jumping on their backs to pull out their flowers sound pretty damn appealing. Except it’s not, not really. You’re given a grip meter, and the task of pulling out a certain number of white flowers to reveal the important special flower while avoiding hazards and dealing with things like randomly sprouting bombs. I found it challenging with a mouse. I can’t imagine it with a controller.
Being so offbeat and having such a short playthrough time, Lili: Child of Geos is a hard sell for $10. Sticking to the story will give you only about two hours of play, but if you’re the type that thrives on collectibles and achievements and flower picking, you could easily triple that play time. I’d be lying if I didn’t say that personally, I’m more excited about exploring Geos and finding all the collectibles than I am about jumping spirits for their blossoms. That said, it’s been sold for as low as $0.99, so it might be a good title to toss on your wishlist until the next big discount comes along.