I haven’t finished Botanicula. If you don’t know what it is, it’s a point-and-click adventure game where all you really need is your mouse and maybe some thinking. In this particular case, it’s light on the puzzles and focuses more on discovery, which I absolutely enjoy because I’m terrible at puzzles. And boy, do the folks over at Amanita Design really know how to reward you for hovering your mouse all over the screen looking for things to click!
Now don’t get the wrong idea: you aren’t forced into clicking all over looking for a hidden object because you’re stuck and need to look for some bloody obscure item to continue on your way. No, I’m swishing my cursor around with wild abandon because I want to. It’s the little bits of random events that make you go “…what?” that’s the driving factor, and they’re done with enough quirky flair that you can’t help but grin. Coming from someone whose facial muscles are, more often that not locked in a displeased grimace (ALWAYS ANGRY ALL THE TIME RNNNNNNGH), that sure as heck counts for something.
As mentioned earlier, I haven’t completed the game. I’m only a third of the way through I believe, having just learned of the huge evil entity that wishes to suck the tree’s life energy. From what I gather, anyway. Visually the game is beautiful but I like to make special mention on the audio side of things: the sound effects are very organic and a number of them are vocalised too! The soundtrack and music is handled by DVA and it all comes together in a perfect fit. As a showcase, I went to record a particular sequence from the game. Now, you won’t see a lot of clicking on my part, because this is the “reward phase” of the level — I had collected five keys prior and as such, am treated to a lovely little display.
Yeah the audio’s a little out of sync. I’m still experimenting with recording games. *shrug*
I’ll be looking forward to slowly enjoying this game as I play it in small doses. Botanicula is currently out for PC, Mac and Linux and may soon be ported to mobile devices. If you’d like to give it a whirl yourself, then please do try out the in-browser demo! http://botanicula.net for all your needs.