A platforming puzzle game with a large bundle of interactive features, this game succeeds at two goals. First, at being a good challenge that causes you to think about your approach to dozens of levels instead of just roaming through and pressing buttons. Secondly, and here’s the catch, also at being fun whilst doing so.
Whenever you make a mistake in this game, you know it’s usually your own fault and you mutter unmentionables under your breath before you willingly try again – because it’s fun.
There are times when, in levels with multiple buttons all being required to be pressed in order to activate something, it’s not very intuitive as to letting you know what it will accomplish and you’ll need to find the solution behind pressing all the buttons before you’re thrown into a second task in the same place. I think this was actually the idea behind the design, but I can’t say I’m incredibly fond of it. Sometimes, things move simultaneously at multiple points on the map and it can be a bit much to take in. It feels like the workings of the level aren’t entirely in your control, which is something the game is otherwise very good at not doing.
There are a few times here and there where you’ve made the right decision and have been thrown off the trail by chance bad feedback, either through a Reaper facing the wrong way at the wrong time, or your button press being just a miniscule portion off where it should have been. As such it’s a good idea to try an idea a couple of times before you give up on a notion.
Not to throw you off though – these things only stand out as bad because they’re the odd ones out in an otherwise great game. The puzzles never seemed completely beyond me, but never did it feel like it wasn’t challenging. For the most part, the only stages that don’t cause you to stop and think about your approach are the ones that are introducing new ideas, and you can be sure that that means more interesting challenges ahead. Occasionally, you can find yourself overthinking a puzzle because extra bits and pieces were placed for the sole purpose of throwing you off the scent. Toward the end of the game, there’s a set of levels designed to make you react very quickly, and the true challenge is being able to work under pressure. It’s a refreshing switch-up.
The whole theme is friendly. You’re a goat with your sidekick (occasionally magical) mouse, out rescuing sheep in a big castle with scary monsters. What on Earth isn’t to like about that?
Oh, and allow me to just throw this out there. You will die in this game. A lot. This will bring you back to the beginning of a level (which are never incredibly long, but it can feel frustrating to have to redo that thing you finally did right after trying and failing at least ten times first). There’s even a hotkey for making your Goat explode and die to restart the level quicker. You’ll be using that button a lot. Several functions rely on your trial and error because they’d be impossible to figure out the first time. Try not to let it get to you.
The music is fitting and blends into the background well. It keeps you from getting bored and doesn’t feel incredibly tedious. Otherwise it’s unremarkable.
I’m pretty sure that whoever is behind this game must have played Pokémon Silver & Gold as a child, because I drew correlations between three particular puzzles in this game and puzzles from The Underground, Cianwood City Gym, and Ice Path. I thought that was interesting.
I completed the game in 7h40m over the course of about a week (apparently mine was a slow playthrough), but like a frickin hour of that was on the last level. Just finished that one now. Sheesh. I died 625 times overall, which I believe averages a death every 44 seconds.
There are also apparently secret puzzles which I haven’t discovered, so I look forward to trying them out and scraping up all the (majority of) achievements I didn’t achieve through my playthrough.
If you like puzzle games, I have very little doubt that you will love this one to death whist you occasionally pull your hair out. Highly recommended for fans of the genre.