Giraffe and Annika Assessment (Swap)


Giraffe and Annika Review - Screenshot 1 of 4

Captured on Nintendo Swap (Docked)

We had been fairly thrilled by this one earlier than booting it up – I imply, what number of video games have giraffes in them?! Actually not sufficient. The Journey Friends repped the ruminant however nothing else actually springs to thoughts. Think about our disappointment, then, once we booted up the sport and located nary an precise giraffe in sight, only a kind of bizarre cat-boy factor. It is a good factor the sport is charming and enjoyable, or we would have needed to ship a stern letter to the publishers.

The entire thing is simply so chill. Taking management of the titular Annika, you end up exploring the mysterious island of Spica, with the purpose of finding fallen stars which can grant you new skills, permitting you to analyze increasingly more of this pastoral peninsula. In that respect, it is a easy journey sport; you’ll be able to’t even leap till you clear the primary “dungeon”. There’s little in the way in which of hostility or fight, apart from a rock-clearing mine-cart experience and the boss battles. All of it will get a little bit extra intense in direction of the tip, however none of that is going to hassle the Pure Platinum crowd. And it is not alleged to.

Giraffe and Annika Review - Screenshot 2 of 4

Captured on Nintendo Swap (Handheld/Undocked)

These aforementioned boss battles take the type of a rudimentary, however gratifying rhythm sport during which Annika should hop left and proper whereas tapping the A button to “catch” projectiles which might be being launched at her by the assailant. In addition to these beats you have to merely hit, there are additionally bigger assaults that have to be dodged – once more, although, whereas that is compelling it is hardly Hatsune Miku-tier rhythm-action, simply one other of the strings on Giraffe and Annika’s nice gameplay bow.

Shifting from the overworld to the most important areas in-game retains the identical exploration gameplay, however as there is not any actual combating all you are able to do is dodge. That is advantageous by us because it suits the sport’s remit, however the very early sport, particularly, can really feel a little bit samey when you might have so few choices on learn how to proceed. It is possible that the endearing world and characters will draw you in regardless, because the banality of the primary “dungeon” stage – which is likely to be a dealbreaker in different video games – is counterbalanced by how ethereal and engaging it appears.

It is all very fairly wanting, in actual fact, with one thing of a storybook aesthetic which solely provides to the sport’s overt attraction. The cutscenes are engaging, with a simplistic manga-ish model that will get throughout the characterisation with cute and interesting nonetheless drawings that do not resort to the much less agreeable tropes of the shape. It is extraordinarily healthful stuff, with no sudden and jarring deviations into any sort of edgier gameplay or content material. It is also price praising the music, which is superb; it reminded us of Studio Ghibli scores, and we discovered it drew us even additional into this rustic world.

Giraffe and Annika Review - Screenshot 3 of 4

Captured on Nintendo Swap (Docked)

It is not an entire dwelling run, sadly. Giraffe and Annika’s flaws had been minor to us – imagine us, we have performed a lot worse – however your mileage might differ. Once we say this sport is chill, we imply it – apart from one significantly hazardous run of obstacles in direction of the sport’s climax, it’s totally, very troublesome to die. Annika can take a number of hits from enemies or hazards, and there are crystals far and wide that may totally restore your well being.

Moreover, the motion itself feels a little bit extra indifferent and floaty the additional by means of you play; when you unlock the leap, the sport naturally will get extra reliant on it and its unusual, unfastened physics. You will additionally unlock a dash transfer that makes your management really feel much more slapdash. As we mentioned, we did not discover it an enormous deal as the sport barely requires precision within the adventuring sections anyway, however you could discover the motion feels a little bit amateurish at occasions.

One other small irritation is the day and evening system – it would not actually add a lot to the sport apart from the occasional frustration of getting to attend round for one thing to occur. You’ll be able to skip from day to nighttime or vice versa by taking a nap, however we discovered this time was greatest used digging a little bit extra into our environment, discovering collectable “Meowsterpieces” (lovely items of collectable art work) and usually absorbing extra of the sport’s lore and humorous character interactions.

Giraffe and Annika Review - Screenshot 4 of 4

Captured on Nintendo Swap (Handheld/Undocked)

Giraffe and Annika builds an fascinating and emotional story that goes a little bit past its fluffy exterior – revealing extra could be a spoiler, however there are clues dotted round Spica Island that will assist you piece it collectively. We had been a little bit annoyed to seek out that the ultimate dungeon constitutes a reasonably abrupt “level of no return”, which required a speedy re-play with the intention to full some non-obligatory duties and see the true ending. Fortunately, as the sport was about 5 hours lengthy on our first playthrough, the second took far much less provided that we knew what we had been doing, now.

Conclusion

It is a little bit ramshackle, however care and craft has gone into the making of Giraffe and Annika. There’s nothing new right here to talk of, however its disparate genres work nicely collectively and we had fun unravelling the mysteries of Spica Island. An excellent sport for youths and the younger at coronary heart, we’re excited to see what builders Atelier Mimina do subsequent.



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