Sometimes a very simple idea can be absolutely gorgeous, like taking the basics of a platform game and giving it a beautifully fluid and colorful style. Such is the case with The King's Bird, an elegant and artistic adventure that's also a challenge for your patience and precision. First and foremost, players should note that this is a game best played with a controller. While it's entirely possible to play with the keyboard, the level of precision involved in running, jumping, and gliding through each area almost requires the flexibility a thumbstick can provide. Using the keyboard, by comparison, feels awkward and clunky, which is the complete opposite of everything else about the game.
One interesting quirk about The King's Bird is how the story develops. Outside of an opening bit of poetic text delivered at the very start, the game uses no text or voice-overs to tell its tale. Everything's communicated through music and animation, like a surreal operatic fairy tale brought to life. It's almost magical to watch the story unfold, but it can be confusing to fully understand. In fact, the game's style and fluidity are mesmerizing to the point of almost distracting you from the gameplay. It's easy to get lost in the moment as you're gliding through the sky, completely forgetting that you really should stick that landing. Thankfully, there are forgivingly spaced checkpoints, as well as an accessible Assist mode, which gives players unlimited glide time if needed. No matter how you play, the artistry in The King's Bird is hard to deny, and well worth checking out.