Celeste … Overcome your Inner Struggles

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Initial release date: January 25, 2018
Engine: Microsoft XNA
Composer(s): Lena Raine
Platforms: Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows, Linux, Mac
Developers: Matt Makes Games, Matt Thorson, Noel Berry
Designers: Matt Thorson, Noel Berry
Strawberries… oh, the wonderful strawberries.
Once in awhile there are games that come in under the radar, and in most cases I wouldn’t even being to try out. But thanks to the Kinda Funny podcast I was able to give ‘Celeste‘ a fair shot. Needless to say that I enjoyed the game from beginning to end. You play as the main character, originally named Madeline but can be changed, and set off to climb a mountain all while dealing with heartache and self-confidence issues.
Do you notice something weird about that mirror?
Celeste is a minimalistic 8-bit Indie game that is simple in theory but difficult in execution. The game has a natural progression throughout where the abilities gained, help you in the inevitable ramp up in difficulty. Even with the hard level elements the loading is seamless and you can try again and again if you get stuck on a particular screen. You will die numerous times and that doesn’t take away from the overall game play. Trust me, it gets tough… even to the point where you might have to make some decisions.
This game has a unique feature in that you can make the game as easy or as difficult as you want. When you get to a point in Celeste where you feel as if you can’t beat a level, you can simply adjust the modifiers. The developers want you to play the game as they have intended it to be but they understand and hope that by modifying it the first play-through that you will play it again with the original difficulty. This is where I thoroughly enjoyed the game as I didn’t want to get stuck on a part of the game that didn’t allow me to progress through the story line.
We can all agree that a strawberry pie sounds amazing right about now.
The story is the most important part of this game. The elements of the game make up a base story but also an underlying story that relates to the real world. I interpreted this game as a main character who struggles with confidence and/or inner demons. The intentions of the story give me the idea that they want to give confidence to people who play this game or for people to realize that not everyone is perfect. This game is much more than jumping and finding strawberries.
Understanding and accepting your inner demons is only the first step.

The gameplay is nothing short of amazing and the story is full of wonderful moments. I cannot recommend this game enough as it will provide many hours of enjoyment, not to mention a platinum trophy. If you find yourself wondering what to play next, don’t pass up a chance to play Celeste.


  • Beautiful art style
  • Wonderful story
  • Adjustable gameplay to fit any style


  • Original difficulty can get in the way of story if trying to complete without modifiers

Please note at the time of publishing this breakdown, this game is available only in digital format.