For the purpose of transparency, this review was completed using a review code provided by Domino Digital Limited. The use of a review code does not affect my judgement of this product.
I’ve have found myself approaching another puzzle game on the PC in the mould of Peregrin. Again it’s another indie game, so has this game continued the new found love I have puzzle games?
For me Peregrin tells a very compelling story, and this is one of the elements the game really stands out in. But, I don’t want to talk about it in depth too much, because it is something I think players should experience themselves. You are placed in control of a girl called Abi, as you explore and try and gain forgiveness from the gods for the sins/mistakes of your ancestors.
The game sees you find out more information of an ancient civilisation, and what has been done incorrectly in past. This is played out through intercoms with you father and an an elder of your birth place. Now what I was I glad to see in the game in these are all voice acted conversations, meaning you don’t have to read the conversations yourself. You will also get more of the story as you locate the monoliths the story is based around, and some short cut scenes which are all audio related as well. In the story you will not meet any other humans on your journey. For me mixing this with the intercom only communication really emphasises this is Abi’s own journey.
Now where the story is very compelling (and something I am fan of) is that it’s all audio based. It does come with some slight issues. The first one is it’s not the best voice acting at times of the game, however this does not take you attention away from the game or ruin it in anyway. Secondly, as you get to the end of the story there is some areas that you feel have not been explained. With areas not being closed off it does leave you wondering why and what has happened, but, more in a frustrated way than a good way.
As mentioned at the beginning of the review this is a puzzle game. However the games puzzles are never that complex, and become very samey after a short while. But, for me this game was made to tell the story, and the puzzling gives it that game element. Don’t get me wrong there was parts of the game I got a little stumped at times, but this could have just been my brain refusing to grasp the puzzle.
How you solve these puzzles, lies in possessing creatures to complete tasks for you. In the game you will find that you possess a bull like creature, a frog like creature and a giant troll like creature. They all have their own uses of course; the bull can knock things over/out of the way, the frog can press buttons with it tongue and pick up items and the Troll can lift big items and weigh down buttons by standing on them. So, the basics of your puzzles are push, press, pick up – and that’s as basic as it gets. The only thing that hinders you possessing the creatures is you need to activate a totem, and have the creatures inside the light area from the totem. Sometimes getting to the totems are part of the puzzles as well, which for me is a good thing personally.
The last part of the gameplay is the battle system, for the few you come across in the game. Again this all about possessing your enemies, and the strategy in doing this correctly. As you step into the area highlighted with black smoke, you can possess an enemy, and then use them to fight. As that one dies you possess another and repeat, then when the last enemy is left you take that out yourself. Just like the puzzles though these are quite simple, and I rarely found myself needing multiple attempts to figure it out.
As with the story the puzzles do come with flaws outside being generally samey. The main one I mentioned earlier; it’s easy, and the reason it is easy is the hints you can’t turn off. What I mean by hints is when you control a creature it highlights what they can actually manipulate with their skills. For example if you pick up a rock with a Troll it will give flashing circle areas where they can be placed, and by doing this it removes most of the brain power you would need if it didn’t. So putting it simply it makes the puzzles easier than they could have been. The next issue is later in the games you need to use the same creatures across multiple screens. Unfortunately to possess these creatures they have to be on the same screen and in sight of the light ring around you. This results in you going back and forth between the screens, and where this would not be an issue, I found the loading between the screens (although minimal) soon became annoying.
I previously mentioned the story is one of the elements the same stands out in, the other is the visuals. As soon as the game loaded up, I totally loved the art style that Domino Digital Limited have gone with. The game really is presented beautifully; one of the most artistic games I have played since Child of Light. The style is very dull with some great splashes of colours. Now add this art style to audio and it really does give you idea of despair for what the story is telling you, and the desperation and loneliness that Abi is feeling as a character. Even moving towards the end of the game, the voices start to become drained on the people you are talking to, making you feel more for the strain it must be having on Abi. The design on Abi herself I really loved, although you can see her legs the way she moves makes you feel like should be floating, giving her a guardian angle like feel. Giving she is looking to atone for previous errors by humanity, this really works and adds to the presentation of the game.
Again the presentation does not come without an issue. The mouse pointer did become lost in the snowy levels and was easily lost at times. But, other that this the game really is presented beautifully and makes the game even more of a pleasure to play.
You can play the game with either control: mouse or mouse and keyboard combo – meaning it caters for however you want to play. I personally found my favourite way of playing it was treating it as a point and click game, and only using the mouse. As aforementioned in the snowy parts this did become a bit frustrating playing it this way, but there’s not many levels you have persevere with this.
Length wise it took me just over three hours to complete. However, if you do struggle with some puzzles this could maybe add another hour max – but, that is about it. When it comes to whether you can play the game again, that will all be down to your personally and how much you enjoyed the story. Because, outside of the wanting to play it for the story again there is no reason to go back to the game. The games also does come with Steam achievements and also a set of cards to collect, so if that something you like you could find yourself playing it again for them. But, for a game that comes in at £10.99 I think three hours is an ample time.
Given how much I loved the story and art style it’s really hard not to recommend Peregin to people, it really is something that is worth experiencing.
If you have any questions about the review, or want to let me know what you think – feel free to tweet me @TattasticGamer
Peregrin is a game that matches fantastic story-telling with beautiful presentation. Even though the puzzle element is simple, the game is all about the story. It does come with some flaws, but these are not game breaking, and wont take away from the wonderful experience this title offers.