Proper 3D platformers are a rarity these days, especially on the Xbox One. That's why we're intrigued by Candleman, a charming adventure featuring a tiny wax-based hero. To succeed, you'll need to decide when and how to melt your little candle. Illumination can trigger vital bridges, or spook dangerous ghosts. As your hero shrinks in size, you're also able to jump higher and flutter across gaps that would otherwise be impossible to traverse. The caveat? Candleman can only burn for 10 seconds before he disappears entirely. To survive, you'll need to get used to the dark.
Candleman is also unusual because it was developed by Spotlighter, an indie outfit based in Beijing, China. Few Xbox One games emerge from this region -- unsurprisingly, most of the console's software comes from Western developers, playing to the audience Microsoft has nurtured in the US and Europe. Candleman started as a game jam project in 2013, and quickly gained recognition for its resource-based puzzle-platforming. An early prototype was then released through Kongregate, which attracted Microsoft and its ID@Xbox team. It launches today for $14.99 -- a nice palate cleanser, perhaps, before Halo Wars 2 arrives on February 21st.