Eagle Island is a testament on how good a Kickstarter game should be. The final version has the potential to be in the ranks of revered modern-day platformers like Shovel Knight and Owlboy. The only thing that can hold Eagle Island back is failing to deliver its promise to its backers.
In the game players play as Quill as he explores the avian world of Eagle Island together with his one of his loyal owls Koji. Together they must fight their way through lush forests and treacherous caverns to rescue Quill's brother from the clutches of a monstrous eagle.
The water in this game is also great; however, it would be nice if you could dive down to see what’s under every water pool. Hopefully, the final retail version of the game will feature more underwater content.
Gameplay is probably the most satisfying aspect of this game besides the art style. Since the game is procedurally-generated, it keeps the game fresh and new every time, even though we have only played a preview build.
The basic enemies aren’t hard to beat since they all just take one shot to kill but they are all satisfying to hit, at the expense of your faithful companion Koji.
Eagle Island also rewards killing enemies in a short amount of time which brings the player’s creativity to work. This is interesting because Koji doesn’t just have one form of attack.
Using blue gems that can be acquired through combos or eagle totems in the game, Koji can perform variants of his basic move. This bring a dynamic on how creative you can be with your combos. There are also perks that Quill and Koji can use to make their journey easier, safer and ultimately help you fight the final boss.
However, fighting the boss in the preview version is extremely hard and as a full disclosure, I haven't been able to beat the boss yet. The boss fight sort of plays out like a Mega Man boss and beating it is just as difficult.
A few tips when playing this game: take advantage of the full controller support or at least have a keyboard with anti-ghosting. Playing this game with a keyboard without anti-ghosting is an absolute nightmare.
So far, the musical score of the game is decent. There isn’t really much to talk about the game’s music since in doesn’t completely set itself apart. The music does its job in setting the game’s mystical vibe but other than that, there is nothing to write home about.
On the plus side, the sound effects that supplements the game’s satisfying gameplay is what is most notable. It adds a cathartic smash and “poof” to every enemy you have slain, making combos even more enjoyable.
In short, Eagle Island has the potential of beating Shovel Knight as the quintessential 2D platformer of our current generation. The only thing that can keep it from being great is the plague that many Kickstarter campaigns fail to beat and that is delivering on its promise.
The Kickstarter campaign for Eagle Island is still running and is close to being successfully funded. At the time of writing, over 900 people have backed the game with over £18,988 pledged of its £20,000 goal.