Requires a Glulx interpreter. Visit IFWiki for download links.
EAScomic page 1.html
HTML-based comic summarizing previous Earth and Sky games

Have you played this game?

You can rate this game, record that you've played it, or put it on your wish list after you log in.

Playlists and Wishlists

RSS Feeds

New member reviews
Updates to downloadable files
All updates to this page

Earth And Sky 3: Luminous Horizon

by Paul O'Brian profile

Episode 3 of Earth and Sky

(based on 38 ratings)
5 reviews

Game Details

Language: English (en)
Current Version: 1
License: Freeware
Development System: Inform 6
Baf's Guide ID: 2401
IFID: GLULX-1-040929-1C3107CC
TUID: gd30rdeaohiyzck0


1st Place - 10th Annual Interactive Fiction Competition (2004)

Nominee, Best NPCs; Nominee, Best Individual PC - 2004 XYZZY Awards

Editorial Reviews

One of the things that I wanted to see in part 3 was more team work. Well, that wish was fulfilled beyond my wildest dreams. In this, the final part of the story, you play both Emily and Austin Colborn. You can freely switch between controlling one or the other at any time. In fact, it is critical to do this in order to figure out which of them will have the needed super-power to get past whatever is blocking the path. This game is much more tightly timed than parts one or two. This is especially true of the final battle, which is a desperate race against the clock with little room for error.
-- Adam Myrow

Overall Luminous Horizon is a great way to pass the time and nice conclusion to the saga started by Earth and Sky. While it might not be the most challenging text adventure you're likely to come across, it is still amusing and certainly has made its mark in the annals of interactive fiction.
-- Jennifer Maddox
See the full review


- View the most common tags (What's a tag?)

(Log in to add your own tags)

Member Reviews

5 star:
4 star:
3 star:
2 star:
1 star:
Average Rating:
Number of Reviews: 5
Write a review

Most Helpful Member Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful:
Almost, but not quite, a satisfying conclusion, April 26, 2010
by Mr. Patient (Saint Paul, Minn.)

There's kind of an illicit thrill in playing a real superhero in IF. For decades now, the overwhelming majority of IF characters have been decidedly un-super in their abilities. Really, they're incompetent, unable to perform even the simplest and most intuitive tasks unless they have exactly the right tool for the job (>BREAK THE SMALL GLASS BOX WITH THE HAMMER | "A valiant attempt."). This is what makes playing the Earth and Sky series (especially in the role of Austin) so refreshing. When you encounter a pair of massive steel doors in Earth and Sky, you don't need to faff around for hours finding the rusty key or inserting the crystalline cylinder or answering a riddle. You simply SMASH THE DOORS. It's a nice bit of therapy for emotionally-scarred IF players.

I really enjoyed the first two games in the series, which combined humor, comic-book action, and a relentless focus on ease-of-play to great effect. Luminous Horizon continues in the same vein, but it's not quite up to the level of the others. The second (and strongest) game centered on an extended puzzle which combined multiple objects and rooms in a pretty satisfying way. Most of the puzzles in the third installment are just variations on SMASH THE DOORS. It's fun and cathartic, but not as rewarding as something a little more elaborate would have been.

One nice feature of Luminous Horizon is the ability to switch back and forth between control of the two siblings, which you'll naturally need to do several times to complete the game. Each sibling sees and describes the world in a different way, which adds a real richness to the experience of playing them.

The author does a good job of eliminating frustration. Like with the other two installments, it's impossible or at least extremely difficult to make the game unwinnable, which is always appreciated. The game also implements a nice (and customizable) conversation system, where you can choose from a menu of replies, ranging from the sincere to the snarky. Unfortunately, your choices don't matter very much -- the game proceeds pretty much the same way no matter how you choose to play the characters.

The conversation system also provides built-in hints. In principle, if you get stuck, you can TALK TO your sibling and get nudged in the right direction. After repeated nudges, the sibling may just solve the puzzle for you. However, for the most challenging puzzle in the game, the hint system is nothing of the kind. It's actually a misdirection system, focusing your attention on something which is almost entirely unhelpful at the moment the advice is being dispensed. Be warned.

At times, it feels like more was planned for the game than was actually implemented. There are areas with interesting objects that can be manipulated, but which don't ultimately matter. There are story threads which seem like they'll be featured prominently (like (Spoiler - click to show)rescuing Dr.
), but which get resolved off-screen. I'd be interested to see what could have been done with this game in a longer format.

If you've played and enjoyed the first two Earth and Sky games, then you certainly ought to give Luminous Horizon a whirl; it's a decent conclusion to the series, and you'll want to know how it ends. But it's not quite as satisfying as it could have been.

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful:
Kapow! Superhero fun!, March 18, 2008
by Steven (Honolulu, Hawaii)

A short, linear game. Luminous Horizon is the 3rd installment of the Earth and Sky series and it helps to be familiar with the first two to follow the story.
The game allows you to control two characters, brother and sister, both with super power suits, "Earth" and "Sky." A command "change" allows you to instantly change between them. Earth has super-strength and near invincibility as his special powers, and Sky is able to fly, fire electrical bolts, and create fogs.
The story truly has the flavor of a comic book, with colorful graphical "kapows," and numerous storyline and dialog cliches taken straight from superhero comic books. The humor in the game is based on making fun of these cliches. A link to a comic book feelie, which provides background info for those who forgot details from or haven't played the other two games, for the game can be downloaded.
The puzzles themselves fit in well with the superhero theme. I don't think it's too much of a spoiler to say that many of the puzzles are solved by using your team's superpowers and action-comic logic. Some of the puzzles are very easy, and some are more difficult requiring wandering back and forth until a "eureka" moment arrives. None of the puzzles are super hard or overly complicated, and talking to your sibling will give progressively bigger clues if you get stuck.
The game is well written, and far as I can tell, bug-free.

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful:
Fun superhero story with two PC's where I had trouble guessing the solutions, February 3, 2016

This is part 3 of Earth and Sky. I played the second one only a few weeks ago, but I already forgot an important power of the characters, and it made the first puzzle very hard for me. However, talking to to each other enough gives you all solutions.

You play two characters, one with sky powers (flying, zapping, fogging), and one with earth powers (punching, lifting, jumping). You are trying to rescue your parents.

The game is pretty short, with a linear sequence of puzzles that you have to solve one-by-one. The writing was good, the graphics were fun (mostly "BLAM!"-type comic words). I was disappointed that I had forgotten so much of the plot from the last playthrough.

This game is very good, but not the best. I think that a few of the other games from 2004 IFComp were better, but that the whole set of 3 Earth and Sky games make a very good package, like a Chopped chef that wins because of three solid courses, while the other chefs had one incredible course and a few poor courses.

See All 5 Member Reviews

If you enjoyed Earth And Sky 3: Luminous Horizon...

Related Games

People who like Earth And Sky 3: Luminous Horizon also gave high ratings to these games:

A Trial, by B Minus Seven
Average member rating: (8 ratings)
A funny thing happens on your way to the Center for Nominal Reassignment. "A Trial" is a chimera of prose, poetry and ???.

Laid Off from the Synesthesia Factory, by Katherine Morayati
Average member rating: (22 ratings)
Synpiece: A wearable technology that changes the wearer's mood. Users of the Synpiece can adjust the 'color' of their experience, which adjusts psychological traits mapped to hue (emotion), saturation (intensity) and value (complexity)....

Draculaland, by Robin Johnson
Average member rating: (25 ratings)
A terse, comic horror puzzle game based loosely on Dracula, faithfully reimagining several characters and ignoring most of the original plot. Guide Jonathan Harker on a trip through Transylvania, interacting with vampires, mad...

Suggest a game

Recommended Lists

Earth And Sky 3: Luminous Horizon appears in the following Recommended Lists:

Active Non-player Characters by Emily Short
Games which make use of non-player characters that have a great deal of independence, often moving around and acting on their own, or taking the lead in conversation. Some of these are more successful than others, but all are likely to...

My top 10 games by Quintin Stone

Interactive Fiction Competition Winners by RichCheng
These are the games that won First Place honours in the IFComp each year.

See all lists mentioning this game


The following polls include votes for Earth And Sky 3: Luminous Horizon:

Fast-paced action scenes by Juhana
Fast-paced action is something that's notoriously hard to do in IF where waiting for player's input necessarily pauses the game every turn. Which games have succeeded in creating action scenes that convey the sense of urgency, danger and...

Games with graphics and/or sound by eyesack
I couldn't find an easy way to search for this, so I figured I'd ask the hivemind: What games use graphics and/or sound to enhance the gameplay, similar to City of Secrets and Necrotic Drift?

Up, Up, and Away: IF starring super heroes by Molly
It's often been said that super-heroes are a poor fit for IF, given the reliance of the former on flashy, colorful costumes and fights. But let it never be said that some poor bastards didn't try. What are some notable attempts at...

See all polls with votes for this game

This is version 7 of this page, edited by Edward Lacey on 26 May 2013 at 9:01am. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item