October 18, 2013 4:47 PM | John Polson
The Tall Trees' debut game, Castles in the Sky for Windows and Mac, is the fairy tale I wish I played when I was younger and am glad I could play today. This isn't for the hardcore player; we share enough of those. This is for the hardcore dreamer.
Castles in the Sky's value is high as a $1.50, ten-minute playable nursery rhyme of sorts, when you consider the gorgeous pixel work, the serene music, and story. You guide a young boy further and further into the clouds, escaping the sun and running into creatures of the sky. You can only move while jumping, which I think may make the game more peaceful (less of an excuse to twitch and fall off smaller moving clouds).
The game is as pristine and imaginative as any children's book you can purchase, with the wonderful added magic of "game" to play along. Surely Tall Trees could have gamified this experience more with its collectible rings, but by the end, I was more curious to know about the possibly bittersweet fate of the boy floating up in the sky.
Thanks to games like Castles in the Sky, parents have another way to interact with their kids. And maybe more importantly, Castles in the Sky allows us to interact with our inner kid, remembering what it's like to dream and how games have the unique ability to let us act out those dreams.