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First frustrating experience with Unravel

Source: YouTube Video

Stashed in: Gamers!, Games

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This frustration aside, Unravel is good right?

Jump off the branch with the rope?  Tie the rope to the apple and throw it off?  I can't see where the rope goes to the left, other than the birdhouse.

Graphics look good :)

Well, my 10yo took to it just fine. I tried starting a new game from scratch to try to get the hang of it better.  I was hoping not to have to use the walkthrough as it's more fun doing stuff yourself (if you have time).   

I ended up watching him and giving him suggestions which was actually more fun. 

I tend to go through a game on my own, but when I get stuck and have exhausted ideas, I jump to the walkthroughs, don't have the time or the patience any more ;)

Choosing style over functionality, Unravel features richly detailed environments alongside terrific animations, but terrible visual feedback and poor communication with the player.

There are moments where interactive objects are indistinguishable from static walls and subsequently obscured. Ledges you can grip and platforms that are just part of the background decoration all look the same, with trial-and-error being the only way to tell the difference. Climbable walls are marked only by a faint glimmer, almost impossible to make out in certain areas.

Unravel is so concerned with looking pretty, it fails to provide its player adequate tools for progress.

Compare this to Limbo, a game Unravel shamelessly mimics in more than a few ways. With its monochrome color scheme and gradual drip-feed of mechanics, Limbo is excellent at informing players without so much as uttering a single word. The boldly contrasting color scheme makes objects distinct, and players learn to implement new ideas as they go.

None of this is true with Coldwood Interactive’s effort.

Unravel is a gorgeous mess as everything blends into each other, while a terrible tutorial opens the game. It inelegantly dumps a wad of text on players and even goes so far as to detail mechanics that won’t show up until far later in the game, by which time they’ll have likely been forgotten.

What we’re looking at here is a poor mimicking of two superior productions – it’s LittleBigPlanet without the user-generated content, and Limbo without the well designed levels or puzzles.

Unravel straddles a frustrated line between these two games, bringing nothing but a suite of intellectually lazy and repetitive puzzles, a character that feels unpleasant to control, and some challenges that reek of “guess what the developer was thinking” rather than well-communicated objectives.

"Intellectually lazy and repetitive puzzles" sounds pretty bad, actually.

There are more games available that we can possibly play. May as well find a great one. 

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