Firstly, Shelter is a short game. Steam says I finished it in 1.1 hours, but I went to the bathroom and forgot to pause it, so probably an hour. I picked the game up on sale on the Humble Store, so I certainly don't feel hard done by. The story is rather moving, and I was sad to lose all but two of my cubs through the game. There is definitely replay value, as I want to finish with all cubs alive! Here are my thoughts:
- Excellent pathfinding, except in the last level where my two remaining cubs focused on a tree on two occasions. Using sprint/sneak overrides this and makes them follow, so no biggie.
- I love the art style, barring a single point in 'cons'.
- The game is very simple, yet really got my heart pumping in certain sections, especially in the penultimate level.
- The water foaming worked very well in my opinion and looked great.
- The water/waterfall texture is a single rolling texture, which I do not like.
- The colours are a bit too desaturated at all times for my liking. This is personal preference I admit, but others may be put off by this.
- No controller support. It's an easy workaround with JoyToKey, but still it shouldn't need to be done. Basic controller support is very common in indie games so I've come to expect it. In any case, Might and Delight (the developers, in case you don't know) also developed Pid, an indie game with full controller support. I sincerely hope that full controller support is included in Shelter 2.
- When keys are re-bound in-game, the prompts early on do not change to reflect this. Very minor, but worth noting.
- This is probably my own lack of skill, but I couldn't catch a single fox. I caught a rat by accident, but never a fox as they were too fast for me to catch up on them by sneaking.
Overall, I very much recommend this game, though perhaps not for €10 unless you see at least 4 playthroughs being likely. I very much enjoyed this game and look forward to Shelter 2!
Rating: 8/10. The story and atmosphere compensate well for its shortcomings.