Telmari Review – A Thorny Good Time

Rizwan Anwer
Rizwan Anwer
6 Min Read
7 Good
Review Overview

Telmari is the debut title from Phoenix Blasters, a small studio that developed and published a cute world with challenging environments and enemies to constantly keep you on your feet as you live, die, and retry the 100 something levels in the game. While the story is very lacking, the game makes up for it with an attractive price, challenging enemies, and the task of completing a level with as few deaths in the fastest possible time.


The story puts us in the shoes of a sunflower farmer named Telmari. After seeing mysterious wines grow in their sunflower field, Telmari joins forces with The Ancient One, a cat with the ability to stop the overgrowth if you can escort it to the root of the problem – a giant tree.

First meeting with The Ancient One

There are a varying range of enemies – with some that will kill you if make contact with them, and others that will break Telmari’s arrows.

The writing is mostly there just to help the two characters move from one level to the next, there is no character development or otherwise going on in the game. There is very little interaction between The Ancient One and Telmari throughout the levels, which kind of makes the game feel a little dry when it comes to building a connection between the two characters.


Equipped with a bow and arrow, Telmari can place arrows that hold their position for a limited time and those only last 2 jumps before breaking. By carefully placing these arrows in the level, you have to make your way through while also avoiding the vines and other enemies in the stage.

With the duo teaming up, the game takes you through multiple levels across different settings and introduces new enemy types along the way that will hinder your progress in the level, and it is your job to achieve 3 objectives as you play:

  • Beat The Ancient One to the end of the level
  • Get the best possible time
  • Beating the level with as few deaths as possible

The gameplay loop is very akin to Super Meat Boy. You live, die, repeat until you get the best possible run for the level that accomplishes the above objectives, this is optional but if you are a fan of the genre or an achievement hunter, you will definitely have a good time with the game if you like a good challenge.

There is also an in-game leaderboard for you to see the best timings for a particular level, and if any of your friends own the game, you can see their times for the level too, and see if you can compete against them.


There is very little to say about the presentation. The simplified pixel aesthetic is similar to that of Celeste but it also has a charm when it comes to the design of enemies and cute little animations when The Ancient One stops to laugh at you being far behind in the stage if you’re too slow.

The sound is personally my least favorite aspect of the game. The music of the game is also something that can be subjective. I was a big fan of Super Meat Boy and Celeste’s soundtrack but I found the music in the game to just be a chip-tune of sorts and after a few levels I chose to drown it out with my own music as I played the levels.

The pixel levels have great attention to detail in the background and foreground. In the foreground, the wind moves the environment such as the trees and their branches, and in the background, the clouds also move as you play through the level.


Telmari is an indie game with a lot of passion put into the level design, mechanics, and the world it’s built upon. With a story that is just there to help push the narrative forward, the game presents itself as more of a gauntlet of challenging levels for fans of Celeste and Super Meat Boy.

With 5 different worlds to traverse and over 100 levels for players to beat with 3 optional objectives, you are in for a challenge if you are someone who prioritizes gameplay over story. While the story could have been better to make me care about Telmari and The Ancient One, it still did an okay job of putting me in a world that was brilliantly brought to life with animated environments.

At its present price of $15, it is a decent game if you want a game to put your 2-D platforming chops to the test, this is a passable entry to the genre where quantity is slightly better than quality, but you can forgive that due to the challenging levels.

This review is based on the PC version of Telmari. The key was provided by Phoenix Blasters.

Review Overview
Good 7
Overall Score 7
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A gamer passionate about writing for the world of video games and consoles. Always on top of the latest leaks and making sure that I'm the first to cover them with the utmost accuracy. Thoroughly enjoy my work and always enjoy talking to other gamers from all over the world!
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