Bright Memory: Infinite Review: Brief, Crisp, But Not Too Bright
Light Memory: Infinite started like Bright memory, a solitary installment that garnered attention due to its visuals and gunplay that seemed too good to be developed primarily by one person. It was incredibly short, however, something this second episode-turned-full-title episode would apparently tackle. Light Memory: Infinite is roughly triple the length and has equally frenetic gameplay, but it’s still too abrupt – and a bit unpolished – for its own good.
InfiniteThe high-octane gameplay comes from its hybrid of melee combat and first-person shooter. It sounds like a recipe for disaster or a recipe that results in two similar anemic systems, but Infinite balances the two beautifully. The shooting game is similar to Titanfall 2, where acrobatics and quick movements dictate the general rhythm. Dashes and double jumps are smooth thanks to the quick controls and even though the four cannons are all simple archetypes, they serve their purpose and have useful alternate fires that give them more utility. The wall run is clunky and the grapple beam is woefully underused and oddly implemented, but using the other tools together makes Infinite a decent entry into the modern landscape of more mobile first-person shooters.
Its melee combat is less conventional and more interesting as it benefits from the same responsive controls but in a different way. Besides the standard quick slash with the sword, it’s also possible to launch enemies into the air, shoot them, and deflect their attacks. It looks a bit like the devil may cry because it is, because manipulating enemies in this way gives a liberating choice during combat. Tossing a soldier into the air, hitting them multiple times, then finishing them off with a massive shotgun blast is rewarding and leads to more creativity than standard gunfights don’t always provide.
However, its defensive mechanics and upgrades help make it more than a first-person game. the devil may cry. Parrying not only negates damage, but also reflects bullets, quickly breaks down an enemy’s protective defensive gauge, and automatically refills the magazine of the currently selected weapon. Using parries wisely means players can maintain momentum by breaking through enemy defenses faster and reloading less often, which becomes crucial when dealing with waves of multiple enemies where priority is key. There’s also an array of upgradable skills that add even more variety, like the Ground Pound and the Obscenely Overpowered Rocket Bash which, when fully upgraded, kills almost anything in one explosive hit. Even on hard, all of these options make combat a fulfilling power fantasy with a refreshing, liberating arsenal and a welcome amount of choice.
Light Memory: InfiniteThe strong mechanical core of is betrayed by its flimsy outer shell which undermines said core or prevents it from reaching its full potential. Infinite can also be completed in an hour and a half and even though games often overstay their welcome, Infinite isn’t long enough to allow players to really take advantage of its arsenal. It ramps up to such an incredibly fast clip, then abruptly ends before its mechanics can evolve or be fully exercised. This is seen most clearly in its upgrades and even though upgrade points are doled out quickly, many probably won’t have enough to fully unlock everything and see everything the game has to offer.
Its unique and loaded control scheme on its own will likely take a bit of time to acclimatize and further demonstrates that the campaign is just too short. Replaying the story is valuable because its fast-paced action quality is worth experiencing again, but that’s essentially all players can do. A wave-based survival mode or campaign remixes would be something, as it can’t fully realize its potential when confined in such a small box. Its abbreviated runtime is even more disappointing due to the precious time it wastes on its terrible stealth section which punishes players too much for getting caught and creates a dumb reason to steal powers and equipment that are at the heart of the game.
Bugs and presentation issues also plague this core. Enemies will sometimes get caught in the environment or run directly towards the player and not attack. Sometimes the subtitles do not turn off, although they are disabled in the options. These aren’t game-breaking issues, but still annoying and sit alongside the most serious technical headaches players are likely to encounter in one form or another. At the end of the game, it froze on a black screen when it should have started throwing credits. When restarting the title from scratch, the menus had somehow switched to Chinese and erased all previous save data. None of the trophies for beating the game were unlocked either, adding an extra dimension to this daunting series of events.
The bugs are part of a larger problem with its presentation. Even though the game runs well and its visuals, while artistically lackluster, look technically impressive, its animations – especially the stealth animations in the forced stealth section – are stuttering at times and the main character model is surprisingly sketchy. Not only does she look worse than the other characters in the game, but she absolutely doesn’t match the art style and looks more like a hentai game built just to get started.
Infinite could have embraced this idiosyncrasy or at least made fun of it, but the game, to its great detriment, is far too serious for that. Dimension-hopping, sword-wielding demons and fighting atop a plane tumbling toward a black hole sounds like great fodder for an over-the-top corny action game, but it presents those storylines (and its overall story) as if they were part of a gripping and well-written drama. An opaque, poorly directed narrative like this would be better suited if it leaned into its more cheesy nature, but instead chose to totally ignore how ridiculous it is and play it straight, resulting in a game which doesn’t capitalize on the personality of its over-the-top gameplay.
Light Memory: InfiniteHybrid gameplay mechanics that combine first-person shooter and melee sword combat are challenging and rewarding, but gameplay around those systems fails to showcase them. Its fast pace comes to a standstill with its ill-suited stealth mission and its complete lack of replayability means there aren’t many ways to enjoy its gameplay further apart from playing through its sometimes janky 90s campaign again. minutes. Shooting and slicing on a second run is satisfying, but it’s not enough and further shows how this is more of a proof of concept than a full experience. Light Memory: Infinite is, ultimately, a demo, with a deft shooter that deserves to become something more than a teaser with a painfully ironic subtitle.
As ComingSoon’s review policy explains, a score of 6 equals “decent.” It fails to reach its full potential and is a mundane experience.