So I stepped out of VR for a bit of a brain break and ran through FE last weekend. AS much as I love VR, a man can only take so much in one week.
I had a lot of initial reservations about the game when it came out earlier this year.
Reviews panned it for terrible controls and game play, and I had decided I was going to skip it entirely based on that aspect, as nothing ruins a game for me faster than shoddy controls.
I will tolerate plot holes, shitty graphics, and a myriad of other issues in a game, but if you give me bad controls you are dead to me.
But this past black Friday FE was marked down to just a few bucks. So I figured even if it is dismal, I can just delete it.
Well color me surprised when it turned out to be MUCH better than I expected.
The game itself revolves around a small woodland creature, it is kinda a mix of a wolf pup and a squirrel for lack of a better description.
You set out on an adventure to save the forest you inhabit from these evil entities hell bent on enslaving all the woodland creatures.
The kicker is, unlike some Disney movie, you cannot actually communicate with them.
You speak squirrel thing, and they speak, bird, or wolf, or elk, etc.
So once you complete a series of tasks to help these creatures, like recovering eggs for the mama bird from said evil creatures, you learn their language.
Thus opening up the abilities in the game.
Once you speak bird, you can talk to the lesser birds and have them fly you all over the game. Or you can commune with some plants to have them open up and give you a seed to throw at enemies.
All of the 6 languages play out this way, each with its own realm and ability to learn that will help you through the world.
It is a solid idea that plays out rather nicely.
The story itself is a little hard to eek out, as it plays out mostly through cave paintings and flash backs found in hidden (and some obvious) stones that put you into the eyes of the evil creatures.
Truth be told, like many indie games, I had to head online to get an explanation to what I just played (one of my major gripes with indie games in general)
It was a heart warming little trip that lasted about 4 hours. But all in all was satisfying front to back.
One thins I will address is the controls.
I can see how some reviews slammed them, but I think that was honestly shoddy journalism.
The controls are different, but never did I find them painful.
Once example I will give is tree climbing, in most traditional games when you latch onto an object to climb it, you move the stick forward to traverse it.
Well in FE once you “stick” to a tree, each press of the jump button moves you up, and when you are on the top, if you press jump again, you jump off.
This is a bit annoying for about 2 mins, til you realize you cannot just hammer jump like crazy. You have to practice a little restraint.
Little gameplay quirks like this is what in my eyes sets FE apart from all the other 3d platform clones out there.
Sound and visual were every nice as well, looking fantastic on the JVC projector. Inky blacks in the forest and shadow detail really pop since my nre calibration.
Sound was amazing too in simulated Atmos, with the wind and environment of the forest coming alive up above.
All in all a great package and a fun game for a quite afternoon.
A reasonable 7/10