Games often feel doomed to be defined either by the games they’re inspired by, or the games they go on to inspire. After all, this is a space where certain games loom so large that we’ve named entire genres after them. So it can be tough to sneak out of the “x meets y” framework we use to describe games. Spark the Electric Jester wears its influences openly. By its own description it’s a platformer inspired by several games from the Mega Drive and Super Nintendo, and it’s clear there’s a love here for Sega’s high speed hedgehog. Spark’s creator, Felipe Daneluz, better known as LakeFepard, created several well known Sonic fan games, and there’s plenty of blue skies and high speed loops to hint at that history. But while retro style games are often content to imitate older titles and rely on the collective nostalgia for them, Spark the Electric Jester builds its own identity. If Sonic Mania was the peak of a philosophy of fan games obsessively built on details of the Mega Drive titles, Spark, along with Freedom Planet, are from a camp that takes the broad feelings those games inspired and sees what it can build… Read full this story
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