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MOTHFLAME (2018)
Developer(s) AlpacaSoft
Publisher(s) Fantendo
Platform(s) Alpaca Star

Steam

Genre(s) Metroidvania/Platformer/Hack 'n Slash
Age Rating(s) E10+ (ESRB)

7 (PEGI)

A (CERO)

Mothflame (2018) is a reboot of the game Mothflame, created by AlpacaSoft, this version is made by the same company, and it seeks to fix any problems the original had, such as having a more complex and conclusive story and generally being a more fleshed out game than its original counterpart.

Much like the original, the game follows Lisa, a robot moth who finds herself in a deep system of cavernous tunnels, having to gain new skills to make her way to the surface. Unlike the original, which had a more modern take on this insect society, this remake has a more mystical take on it, similar to the game's main inspiration, Hollow Knight.

Gameplay

Mothflame remains a side-scrolling Metroidvania, the player can jump and walk around, naturally, and as with any Metroidvania, they gain skills as they progress through the game, mainly mobility skills such as dashing and double-jumping. In place of the original game's ranged combat, the remake features a (small) variety of swords that the player can collect and use against enemies, they start with a simple needle, but gain and are able to buy new weapons to equip and unequip at any time during their adventures.

With the weapons, the player is able to find certain buildings in towns, where they may pay to learn new moves and combos to use against their foes. As one could guess from that, the game has certain elements of a hack 'n slash game, or a beat 'em up, with the player having to use their abilities to defeat enemies and proceed through the game's paths and labyrinths. If the player has enough Beads, they may afford full skill sets, which completely change the player's fighting style.

Upon beating any enemy in the game (except for major bosses) the player is rewarded with Beads, which serve as currency in the underground mazes they traverse, Beads can be spent in towns for healing items, weapons and new attack techniques/fighting styles.

All of the items and such that the player gets in the game can be seen in the inventory menu, where they can use their healing potions and equip their weapons and styles.

Story

Tales tell of the ancient flames, the embers that hold the world together, and of the many dark beings that have tried to extinguish them. This is the tale of a brave warrior who freed the dying world from their need for these flames, a brave soul with a simple name... Lisa
the game's opening narration.

The game opens with Lisa, laying on a large, fallen petal, somewhere underground, she gets up and makes her way through the caves she has found herself in, eventually finding a rusty needle, which she assumes could be used as a sword, she tries to remember how she got there, but is completely unable to. Wearing a leaf to protect herself in the dark and cold tunnels, Lisa arrives at a small town known as Lilliburg, only a few bugs are still up and awake and she gets to know them before having to head off, but something happens and the ground beneath her breaks, leading her to take a detour further underground. (Dungeon: The Silk Road)

Making her way down the dark pathways, Lisa encounters many small, eight-legged critters, and then, a large room with a big monster eating something in the corner, with its back towards her. Lisa approaches carefully, with her sword in hands, the creature turns around and confronts Lisa. (Boss: Mother Eight-Eyes)

With the creature defeated, Lisa is able to break through its webs and reach a big field of mushrooms and other fungi, with some light shining down from cracks above, she traverse this field, having to bounce around the massive mushrooms, and she finds a sort of block that she is able to fit on her back. (Upgrade: Double Jump)

With her newfound ability to hop in the air, Lisa is able to reach higher places and make it to a tunnel filled with crystals, which reflect the light coming from above into beautiful "murals" on the walls around them, and after a short walk in this tunnel, Lisa reaches the other side and the once beautiful capital city of the bees, Honeystead, which is now a dried out husk with hardly anyone living there.

Having nobody to talk to or to help her, Lisa traverses the ruined city, making her way to the top and finding someone, who quickly runs away. Lisa follows that bug up the husk of the tree the bees had their city inside, eventually reaching the top and being confronted with a bug in a cloak and a black mask with a single eye-hole. She has a much better sword than Lisa, but they fight anyway, with Lisa just barely winning before being cut across the chest and thrown off the tree. (Dungeon: Decaying Woods, Boss: Beatrice I)

Lisa awakens on the surface, light shining through the clouds above and various odd spires sticking out of the ground far ahead, she continues onwards until she finds a small town of mantids, all living quietly and happily. Lisa asks around and learns of "the queen", the ruler of the surface and underground alike, thinking that maybe this queen would know something about her past, Lisa asks where to find her, to which she's pointed towards the biggest spire in the distance, which is supposedly the queen's castle.

Heading towards the distant castle, Lisa has to go underground once more, through a dark subterranian garden, after some exploration, Lisa finds a large armored mantis, she attacks it and the guard awakens to fight back. (Boss: The Broken Knight)

Once the knight is down, Lisa feels a strange energy entering her, and she gains the ability to boost for a short amount of time, similar to the guard she just defeated. (Upgrade: Dash)

She continues on her path towards the queen's castle, passing through a small town being ravaged by a group of beetles , so, Lisa jumps into action and faces off against the leader of this beetle gang. (Boss: Randice)

After driving off the bothersome insects, Lisa asks around the town for the quickest way to the queen's castle, and an elder fly, still scared out of his mind, tell hers that she has to head further down to reach the castle's entrance, but that it is still far away, so Lisa thanks him and heads off. After some time in the tunnels, Lisa meets a spider, but this one is completely unlike those she faced before, she doesn't seem to be hostile towards Lisa.

This spider, named Delilah, claims that the way into the depths of the underground is not distant, but if Lisa were to just jump down, she wouldn't have time to regret it, so she offers the moth a deal: If Lisa were to collect a special type of silk and a flower, she'd be able to make something that'd save Lisa when she hopped further down. Lisa accepts this request and heads off to find the necessary material.

First, Lisa returns to the garden where she fought the Broken Knight, and opens a way down into an eight-eyes den, seemingly much more dangerous than the one she fought through before. (Dungeon: The Silk Pits)

At the bottom of the infested well, Lisa meets up with a massive eight-eyes, holding a small ball of shiny silk, Lisa asks for it, but she gets growled at and the giant creature fights back. (Boss: Father Eight-Eyes)

In a last effort to stop Lisa from taking the silk, the Father Eight-Eyes makes the well crumble, so Lisa ties some of the silk to her arm and makes her way up and out of there. (Upgrade: Grapple Silk)

With a new skill in one hand and the silk Delilah needs in the other, Lisa goes forward to the destroyed village, where she decides to take the upper path and find a special flower. Lisa enters a fallen, rotting tree filled with disturbing creatures, Lisa has to walk on the slimy, soft wood to get to the other side and find anything that isn't already dead. At the end of her exploration, Lisa meets up with Beatrice once more, watching over a flower, presumably one that Lisa could use, so they fight over who keeps the flower. (Dungeon: Shambling Tree, Boss: Beatrice II)

As Lisa wins the fight, Beatrice's mask cracks open to reveal that she's a beetle, and she goes on explaining that the flower holds significance to her, as that tree is the resting ground of Beatrice's parents after the queen had them executed for not following royal orders. After hearing the full story, Lisa lets Beatrice live and keep the flower, and she returns to Delilah with only the eight-eyes' silk.

Returning to the spider with only the silk, Lisa loosely explains what happened, and Delilah understands, she presumes that she can make her plan work with only the silk, so, she gets to knitting and shaping the silk into a sort of parachute for Lisa to use. Since it doesn't have the flower petals necessary, it wouldn't last long breaking Lisa's fall down the pit, but Lisa uses it anyway.

Landing safely at the bottom, Lisa notices the bright lights emanating from the shifting cracks on the ground, as well as from roots covering the place. Lisa proceeds onwards and is, eventually, faced with a blinding white ember in a sort of cocoon, connected to all the roots, by the look of the walls in the flame's chamber, she had reached the queen's castle.

Lisa makes her way up and into the proper white fortress, trying to avoid the mindless bugs littering the massive room, and once she gets to the top, she enters the castle for good and has to make her way to the top to meet the queen. (Dungeon: Ivory Castle)

After fighting many beetles and using her skills she had acquired up to that point, Lisa reaches the queen's throne room, where she is looking out over the barren surface, Lisa herself could only see one or two villages in the distance, but the queen, being much taller, could probably see a lot better. Lisa tries talking to the queen, who begins to talk back. She says her name is Queen Vibra, and she angrily asks how Lisa made it through her royal guard. Vibra recognizes Lisa as the one reportedly causing trouble with her beetle soldiers, and decides that if they can't defeat a pest like Lisa, she'll do it herself. (Boss: Queen Vibra I)

Lisa loses the battle against Vibra, and is thrown into a prison cell far away from the castle, without any of her equipment. In the cell, Lisa makes friends with a butterfly named Anna, who helps her escape by distracting the guards at the other side of the iron bars, so, Lisa has to make her way through the prison to find her sword and other items. (Dungeon: Darkest Prison)

After collecting her equipment, one by one, Lisa is able to go back and lead Anna to the exit, but when they get there, the path is blocked by a large dark bug in a cloak and wearing a mask, not unlike Beatrice's, Anna steps back and Lisa fights off the enemy. (Boss: The Hollow One)

With the foe defeated, Lisa absorbs its energy and gains the ability to become invisible to enemies, like the Hollow One did. (Upgrade: Camouflage)

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Characters

Lisa
A robot moth with a mysterious past that she must try to uncover as she travels deep underground and faces off against all sorts of monsters with only a trusty make-shift sword at her side.
Beatrice
A beetle who is a member of Vibra's royal guard, only working for her out of fear after losing her parents, she becomes Lisa's rival throughout the moth's adventures.
Queen Vibra
The ruler of the surface and underground worlds and the game's main antagonist, not much is known about her motive and actions, other than that she killed many of her subjects for not obeying her.

Items

A full list of the items found in the game, separated into normal items (consumables), upgrades and weapons.

Consumables

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Upgrades

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Blades

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Locations

All of the locations the player goes through in their adventure through the world of Mothflame.

The Blooming Road
A quick tutorial section where Lisa first awakens in the underground, it has massive flowers and blue moss covering the walls and ground.
Lilliburg
A town somewhere near the Blooming Road, where Lisa passes by to try and go somewhere, but the ground just outside of town breaks and she has to take a detour.
The Silk Road
The game's first dungeon, a series of tight tunnels covered in cobwebs created by the eight-eyes, this area ends with a battle against the Mother Eight-Eyes.
The Mushroom Forest
As the name suggests, it is essentially a forest made up of giant mushrooms, some of which can bounce Lisa upwards to certain higher ledges. The double jump upgrade is found here.
The Crystal Caverns
This cave system houses many colorful crystals that reflect the light from the cracks above them, making large patterns of colored light on the cave walls.
Honeystead
What was once the capital city for the bees is now just the ruins of their gigantic hive, underneath a hollowed-out dying tree.
The Decaying Woods
This dungeon is a climb around the interior of the dying tree the bees had their city built inside of, using some of the bouncing mechanics seen in the Mushroom Forest. At the top, Beatrice is fought for the first time.
The Surface
A barren, desolate land of dry ground and dead plants, with spires from Queen Vibra's castle coming out of the ground in the distance.
Mantids' Rock
A small town on the surface inhabited by mantids, simply living their lives under the shadow of the queen's castle.
Secret Garden
A small dungeon with few enemies and many plants, it seems to be an old well without any water. At the end of the player's first visit, they battle the Broken Knight, and when they return, they enter the Silk Pits for a major quest.
Spinnhenge
A town first seen attacked by the queen's royal guard of beetles, Randice is fought during this chaos.
The Ivory Crater
A massive pit with a white light emanating from the bottom, Delilah is a character seen around the crater, and a quest offered by her allows the player to get to the bottom to progress through the story.
The Silk Pits
A dark pit covered in cobwebs, this place is found somewhere in the Secret Garden. This dungeon ends with the battle against the Father Eight-Eyes and Lisa then gains the grapple silk upgrade.
The Shambling Tree
Another dead tree found on the surface, accessed from an alternate path leaving Spinnhenge, this dungeon is full of slugs and other creatures. At the end, Beatrice is fought again for the ownership of a beautiful flower.
The Ivory Castle
Queen Vibra's own palace, inhabited only by her and her beetle soldiers, at the base of the castle, Vibra keeps the Flames of Creation cocooned and powering her kingdom, and at the very top, she watches over the surface and gives out orders to her subjects and army.
The Darkest Prison
The Darkest Prison is a puzzle-filled dungeon where the player must sneakily clear the path to the exit, going back and forth to recollect their items along the way, and once the way is open, Lisa battles the Hollow One to escape with her newfound butterfly companion, Anna.
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Bosses

Along their travels, players will find larger enemies to fight, below is a listing of all of them.

Mother Eight-Eyes
A big mindless spider who runs along the walls of her arena and spits acid at Lisa, her weak spot is her abdomen, which can be hit at any time.
Beatrice I
In Beatrice's first battle with Lisa, she uses basic techniques that can be dodged easily, while also being incredibly agile and hard to land hits on.
The Broken Knight
one of the three Great Knights fought throughout the game, the Broken Knight mainly charges at Lisa with his dash ability and can only be hit on his three eyes at the top of his head.
Randice
Randice is a beetle from Vibra's royal guard who is first seen terrorizing a small town, until Lisa shows up. He rolls around the arena and attacks with his horn, which must be broken to win the fight.
Father Eight-Eyes
An even bigger mindless spider who stays in the background and must have his eight eyes destroyed in order to be defeated. Meanwhile, he attempts to spit acid and slash at Lisa with his long legs.
Beatrice II
When Beatrice is fought again, she is more at equal grounds with Lisa, down to having many of the same skills to use against the player, who must watch out for her quick movements and deadly slashes.
Queen Vibra I
The first battle with the queen is impossible to be won, her large size makes melee attacks unavoidable and her powerful magic is also impossible to dodge, the only choice the player has is to lose to her.
The Hollow One
One of the three Great Knights, the Hollow One is a menacing horned figure able to go into hiding in the blink of an eye to catch an opponent off-guard, his head is the only part of his body that cannot be hit, due to his sturdy mask.
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Soundtrack

The soundtrack for the game consists mainly of ambient songs for traveling around and the more action-packed songs that play during boss fights.

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Trivia

  • The boss known as the Hollow One is a large reference to the game Hollow Knight (SPOILERS).
    • The game's titular final boss is also a large, horned imprisoned bug, he also is quite agile and both of them have the word "Hollow" in their names.
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