Interact with the spirits of the dead, solve the puzzles of the mysterious mansion and help Elena find her missing father in the horror/adventure puzzle game: Whispering Willows.
User reviews:
Recent:
Mostly Positive (31 reviews) - 70% of the 31 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
Overall:
Very Positive (369 reviews) - 84% of the 369 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Jul 9, 2014

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Digital Art Book, Soundtrack, and Wallpaper

 

Reviews

“A horror/adventure puzzle game with an absolutely gorgeous aesthetic.”
Kotaku

“Whispering Willows is well-supported with touching themes of regret, lost love, and one's spiritual connection to nature.”
7/10 – Gamespot

“Whispering Willows wants you to learn its story, connect with its characters, and become engrossed in its world.”
8.5/10 – CGMagazine

About This Game

Young Elena Elkhorn embarks on a harrowing journey to find her missing father and discover the secrets of the Willows Mansion. Aiding her journey is a unique amulet, she received from her father, which allows her to astral project her spirit into a ghostly-realm and communicate with the dead. Play as Elena to find her missing father, use your astral projection to solves the mansion’s tricks and puzzles, help the lingering souls and discover so much more in Whispering Willows.

Game Features

  • Immerse yourself in a beautifully hand-drawn 2-D world as you traverse the Mansion grounds
  • Allow the haunting music and chilling sound effects to send goosebumps across your neck.
  • Let the history of the Willows Mansion draw you into a plot full of twists and betrayal.
  • Explore the vast Mansion and unlock its puzzling secrets as you search for your missing Father.

Deluxe Edition includes:

  • Digital Art Book - A 56 page Digital Art book exploring the concepts and style used to create the art of Whispering Willows
  • Soundtrack - 10 Tracks of original music from Whispering Willows
  • Wallpaper - 1920x1280 Wallpaper of Elena Elkhorn

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows 7
    • Processor: 2 cpus 2.3 Ghz to 2.69 Ghz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 4000 or higher
    • Storage: 3 GB available space
    Minimum:
    • OS: 10.7 or higher
    • Processor: 2 cpus 2.3 Ghz to 2.69 Ghz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 4000 or higher
    • Storage: 3 GB available space
    Minimum:
    • Processor: 2 cpus 2.3 Ghz to 2.69 Ghz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 4000 or higher
    • Storage: 3 GB available space
Customer reviews
Customer Review system updated! Learn more
Recent:
Mostly Positive (31 reviews)
Overall:
Very Positive (369 reviews)
Recently Posted
Tillburg
( 2.7 hrs on record )
Posted: July 20
GLANCE RECOMMENDATION: 71% YES / 29% NO

GOOD
  • Lighting, music, and sound design are impressive and all help to convey a mysterious, ghostly exploration setting.
  • Characters are simple and easy to understand, which lends itself to an easily approachable story.
  • There's a surprising beauty to the background art and especially the interior I didn't expect.
  • I never felt like I had a bad sense of navigation, despite the buildings having quite a few doors and levels and the garden areas being massive.

NEUTRAL
  • I never felt like I entirely understood the last beat of the story and was a bit offput by the villain's motives to be evil.

BAD
  • Despite some of the actual threats having cool presentation, I never enjoyed them appearing. Most of the times they struck quick and made you redo the room, which itself is easy, but it's more bothersome than enticing.
  • The in game art is rather beautiful, but for some reason we get some short cut scenes towards the end with a dip in quality. I would have rather seen these removed.

SUMMARY
At the full price point, this is an easily recommendable ghost/mystery exploration game that will demand a mere few hours of your time. With great lighting, sound design, and overall aesthetic: please take a moment to explore Whispering Willows.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Matty Mudshovel WoodBanger
( 0.2 hrs on record )
Posted: July 19
Our team helped look over this game and of course ive played it on my other account here on steam. This is an awesome game, so awesome that we reviewed it on our Official website. Here is a bit of the except:

Overall, I enjoyed the game greatly. The art of the game itself was lovely, but for as lovely as the game art was, the artwork for the handful of cutscenes took me out of the immersion and broke it when they did pop up. This was because they were a bit more amateur in appearance in contrast to the lovely environments, especially the interiors of the mansion and guest house. The only other gripe I have is there are in a couple places in the game where they tried to add enemies, which you will find out in game what they really are. These entities only make passing thru certain spots more annoying and tedious than anything else; I think they were trying to add a sense of dread and urgency by placing these things in there, but it didn’t really do that. Luckily this is only in a handful of places and you can get past those once you figure out the pattern. Otherwise, I enjoyed the game. I couldn’t help but feel for some of the characters as I learned about them and their stories, heart actually aching for a couple of them. There were even a couple places of cute or slightly morbid humor mixed in as well, that I found amusing (a few of these are linked to non-story achievements). There are some easter eggs tucked in if you look and you can get achievements for. The Steam version of this game features 20 achievements (13 story related, 7 easter eggs), Steam trading cards, emoticons, badges, and backgrounds.


full review can be read here http://www.woodbangersentertainment.com/whispering-willows-steam-game-review/
Helpful? Yes No Funny
リリー Lillyella
( 4.1 hrs on record )
Posted: July 12
I play it so weird game that i have ever play it
its not worst but the places its make me lost
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Nemesis
( 2.2 hrs on record )
Posted: July 11
I have mixed feelings about this game. I saw it during the summer sale, and decided to take a gamble. I'm not sure it totally paid off.

The art is great! During the gameplay, anyway. The cutscene art is not so good. And the animation is really hit and miss. Sometimes it feels like some frames of animation are missing. The music is atmospheric, and sets the mood. The story in the notes is intriguing, but the main story of Elena finding her dad is really basic and forgettable. And the ending could have been interesting, but it didn't really work.

The puzzles are also really easy. I only got stuck on one because I thought it was more complicated than it really was. And unfortunately, the movement speed is too slow. Add frequent backtracking, and it can get frustrating. Enemies were a minor nuisance at best. And they were disappointing, with only bugs and some demon hedge things.

I also had a few minor control issues. I played on an Xbox One gamepad, and it didn't always play nice. Down on the thumbstick didn't work on the menus, but other directions did. And down worked fine for ladders and such. Also, kind of frustrating that you have to stop moving the stick to open a door. There were also a few UI issues, namely with text going off screen or being obscured by other text. And the game gave me gamepad movement prompts and keyboard interaction prompts.

The bit in the crypt at the beginning was probably the best part of the whole game. You know, after you open the coffin and then that thing starts chasing you? It gave me really high hopes for the rest. But it doesn't fully embrace the horror atmosphere for the rest of the game. The ghosts are harmless, and again, very few (and kind of lame) enemies. And well, it's really short. I'm seeing most people say 3-4 hours, and I got through it in just over 2.

Still, I think this is a good way to burn through an afternoon. $10 might be a bit much, but I've paid more to see a movie. And I got it on sale, so that helps. I think that, overall, it's worth checking out if you can get it on sale.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Knight Murphy
( 3.9 hrs on record )
Posted: July 9
Fun game, very atmospheric. The puzzles are not particularly challanging, and require a lot of backtracking.
There are a lot of 'notes' and messages you collect throughout the game, can't say they add a lot to the experience. Even so, the atmosphere of the game is tense and frightning. The music is a bit weak. The game is a tad short (3.9 hours for me, and this includes a lot of backtracknig 'dead' time) so I don't recommend buying it for full price but only when there's a sale.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
moezero
( 0.4 hrs on record )
Posted: July 6
Product received for free
1、虽然本作自带中文,但糟糕的字体和几近机翻的翻译还是让人感觉缺乏诚意。
2、游戏的美工比较地粗糙,PV很好地回避了这些缺点
3、我玩游戏切换时经常会崩溃,这导致了我退款。
4、他们至少同意了我的退款,所以我会给个好评。


1、We'd like to suppourt games included offical chinese language,but the fonts and translation suck.
2、A little poor art design,which will not realized in PV on the shop page.
3、fatal error happened too ofter so I give up to play this game.
4、At least they return my money,so I think I must like this game:)
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Tildy
( 2.3 hrs on record )
Posted: July 4
Yay, my favorite genre! (runny climby haunted house ghosty genre, to be precise), and with a female main character, no less! No romantic subplot, ghosts literally everywhere, and lots of exploration. Nice!

Just one or two complaints. Without spoiling too much the redemption of the villain was *farting noise.* He is established to be a piece of garbage and the fact that he calmly and peacefully leaves when another, less ♥♥♥♥ character is said to be going to hell makes me want to punch something.

Also, it can be very difficult to tell what's going to hurt you and what's not, especially since you can't move while using the powers necessary to see the enemies.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
yami_san
( 1.9 hrs on record )
Posted: July 3
I'm sorry to say this, but in my optnion the game is not very good, I'd even say bad. I expected something like Oxenfree and received something like a flash game. I'm surpized to see so many positive reviews.

+Great ingame graphics
+Music is... fitting, I suppose?

-I feel NOTHING for these characters. Maybe some backstory or voice acting would help? I don't even know.
-Whole thing feels like one fetch quest. Puzzles are primitive.
-Cutscene drawings are just plain bad.
-Not being able to run indoors is... well, boring.
-Enemies are rather annoying, not challenging.

*Adding 10 game references to obvious places does not automatically make your game good.
*The game is short. In 2 hours I've done everything. But the price is good (?). I guess it balances out.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
ibenuknow
( 3.5 hrs on record )
Posted: July 3
This game was truly an experience. The story was unique, and the art was just amazing. It is a bit of a puzzle game, which isn't one of my fave genres, but I really enjoyed playing this
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Black
( 4.3 hrs on record )
Posted: June 30
It's great!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
2.3 hrs on record
Posted: July 4
Yay, my favorite genre! (runny climby haunted house ghosty genre, to be precise), and with a female main character, no less! No romantic subplot, ghosts literally everywhere, and lots of exploration. Nice!

Just one or two complaints. Without spoiling too much the redemption of the villain was *farting noise.* He is established to be a piece of garbage and the fact that he calmly and peacefully leaves when another, less ♥♥♥♥ character is said to be going to hell makes me want to punch something.

Also, it can be very difficult to tell what's going to hurt you and what's not, especially since you can't move while using the powers necessary to see the enemies.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
3.5 hrs on record
Posted: July 3
This game was truly an experience. The story was unique, and the art was just amazing. It is a bit of a puzzle game, which isn't one of my fave genres, but I really enjoyed playing this
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
2.7 hrs on record
Posted: July 20
GLANCE RECOMMENDATION: 71% YES / 29% NO

GOOD
  • Lighting, music, and sound design are impressive and all help to convey a mysterious, ghostly exploration setting.
  • Characters are simple and easy to understand, which lends itself to an easily approachable story.
  • There's a surprising beauty to the background art and especially the interior I didn't expect.
  • I never felt like I had a bad sense of navigation, despite the buildings having quite a few doors and levels and the garden areas being massive.

NEUTRAL
  • I never felt like I entirely understood the last beat of the story and was a bit offput by the villain's motives to be evil.

BAD
  • Despite some of the actual threats having cool presentation, I never enjoyed them appearing. Most of the times they struck quick and made you redo the room, which itself is easy, but it's more bothersome than enticing.
  • The in game art is rather beautiful, but for some reason we get some short cut scenes towards the end with a dip in quality. I would have rather seen these removed.

SUMMARY
At the full price point, this is an easily recommendable ghost/mystery exploration game that will demand a mere few hours of your time. With great lighting, sound design, and overall aesthetic: please take a moment to explore Whispering Willows.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
2.2 hrs on record
Posted: July 11
I have mixed feelings about this game. I saw it during the summer sale, and decided to take a gamble. I'm not sure it totally paid off.

The art is great! During the gameplay, anyway. The cutscene art is not so good. And the animation is really hit and miss. Sometimes it feels like some frames of animation are missing. The music is atmospheric, and sets the mood. The story in the notes is intriguing, but the main story of Elena finding her dad is really basic and forgettable. And the ending could have been interesting, but it didn't really work.

The puzzles are also really easy. I only got stuck on one because I thought it was more complicated than it really was. And unfortunately, the movement speed is too slow. Add frequent backtracking, and it can get frustrating. Enemies were a minor nuisance at best. And they were disappointing, with only bugs and some demon hedge things.

I also had a few minor control issues. I played on an Xbox One gamepad, and it didn't always play nice. Down on the thumbstick didn't work on the menus, but other directions did. And down worked fine for ladders and such. Also, kind of frustrating that you have to stop moving the stick to open a door. There were also a few UI issues, namely with text going off screen or being obscured by other text. And the game gave me gamepad movement prompts and keyboard interaction prompts.

The bit in the crypt at the beginning was probably the best part of the whole game. You know, after you open the coffin and then that thing starts chasing you? It gave me really high hopes for the rest. But it doesn't fully embrace the horror atmosphere for the rest of the game. The ghosts are harmless, and again, very few (and kind of lame) enemies. And well, it's really short. I'm seeing most people say 3-4 hours, and I got through it in just over 2.

Still, I think this is a good way to burn through an afternoon. $10 might be a bit much, but I've paid more to see a movie. And I got it on sale, so that helps. I think that, overall, it's worth checking out if you can get it on sale.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
3.9 hrs on record
Posted: July 9
Fun game, very atmospheric. The puzzles are not particularly challanging, and require a lot of backtracking.
There are a lot of 'notes' and messages you collect throughout the game, can't say they add a lot to the experience. Even so, the atmosphere of the game is tense and frightning. The music is a bit weak. The game is a tad short (3.9 hours for me, and this includes a lot of backtracknig 'dead' time) so I don't recommend buying it for full price but only when there's a sale.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: July 19
Our team helped look over this game and of course ive played it on my other account here on steam. This is an awesome game, so awesome that we reviewed it on our Official website. Here is a bit of the except:

Overall, I enjoyed the game greatly. The art of the game itself was lovely, but for as lovely as the game art was, the artwork for the handful of cutscenes took me out of the immersion and broke it when they did pop up. This was because they were a bit more amateur in appearance in contrast to the lovely environments, especially the interiors of the mansion and guest house. The only other gripe I have is there are in a couple places in the game where they tried to add enemies, which you will find out in game what they really are. These entities only make passing thru certain spots more annoying and tedious than anything else; I think they were trying to add a sense of dread and urgency by placing these things in there, but it didn’t really do that. Luckily this is only in a handful of places and you can get past those once you figure out the pattern. Otherwise, I enjoyed the game. I couldn’t help but feel for some of the characters as I learned about them and their stories, heart actually aching for a couple of them. There were even a couple places of cute or slightly morbid humor mixed in as well, that I found amusing (a few of these are linked to non-story achievements). There are some easter eggs tucked in if you look and you can get achievements for. The Steam version of this game features 20 achievements (13 story related, 7 easter eggs), Steam trading cards, emoticons, badges, and backgrounds.


full review can be read here http://www.woodbangersentertainment.com/whispering-willows-steam-game-review/
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
0.4 hrs on record
Posted: July 6
Product received for free
1、虽然本作自带中文,但糟糕的字体和几近机翻的翻译还是让人感觉缺乏诚意。
2、游戏的美工比较地粗糙,PV很好地回避了这些缺点
3、我玩游戏切换时经常会崩溃,这导致了我退款。
4、他们至少同意了我的退款,所以我会给个好评。


1、We'd like to suppourt games included offical chinese language,but the fonts and translation suck.
2、A little poor art design,which will not realized in PV on the shop page.
3、fatal error happened too ofter so I give up to play this game.
4、At least they return my money,so I think I must like this game:)
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
Recommended
23.3 hrs on record
Posted: June 29
I loved the art style and atmosphere in this game. But it is soooo slow! You can not run inside buildings, and most of the game takes places inside. It became annoyingly slow. But on the other hand, the atmosphere was so nice that I did finish it. And enjoyed playing. Even restarted for the last achievements. BUT...did not make those. The game is very lineair and i did not want to go through the whole thing again. So my advice is: if you play this game for a 100% achievement score, use a walkthrough. You can not go back after finishing the game, and replay value is 0.0.

It is really a 50/50, but since that is not an option, i give this game the benefit of the doubt.
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Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
94 of 112 people (84%) found this review helpful
Recommended
4.3 hrs on record
Posted: July 9, 2014
Games like this are hard to judge on face value alone. When you take more common, action oriented titles, it can be easier to tell from just a minute or two of uninterrupted gameplay footage if a game is going to be worth your time or not. But slower paced, narrative focused titles, like Whispering Willows, are considerably harder to figure out from just viewing a short trailer. Games like this are driven by their quality of narrative and puzzle design. Does the crisp and whimsical imagery evident in WW’s screenshots affirm a similarly elegant literary and brain teasing experience? Unfortunately, no, not even close. But Whispering Willows is still an endearing first effort by fledgling studio Night Light Interactive, even with the game’s numerous flaws. In fact, it’s more what the game doesn’t try to do that is most disheartening.

I’ll begin with the most egregious error this game makes: the quality of narrative. The story is thus: young Elena’s father has gone missing, and has been for some time. After waking from a particularly vivid nightmare of her father being held captive by something, she races to an old, decrepit mansion, of which her father is the groundskeeper. She soon meets the ghost of her ancestor, who teaches her of her heritage, and of her innate ability to leave her body and walk the earth as a spirit, allowing her to commune with the ghosts of those who have yet to pass. What follows is a supernatural tale of loss, deceit and the darkness that festers within.

In truth, the narrative plays out like cross between a darker Goosebumps tale with bits of Clive Barker’s grotesque imagery. This is partly due to the art style; it just doesn’t convey feelings of foreboding and fearfulness that I believe the narrative wants to. Worse, the story takes virtually no risks. But what really hurts the experience is the quality of the dialogue. Throughout the adventure, you will speak with the deceased, and often be asked to find items of importance to them to progress through the story. The dialogue that occurs here is just, well… the best thing I can call it would be, “serviceable”. The dialogue is so often uninspired and plain that it would keep me from really caring for any of the characters’ plights.

I feel I’ve spoken enough on the negatives of the narrative, so let’s move on to the disappointment of the game’s main mechanic, your spirit form, and the weak puzzle design dependent on it. The lack of pluralization is not a mistake, Whispering Willows’ mechanic of Elena’s spirit form most often offers only a single type of puzzle throughout the game. You will come across locked doors, and you will either need to pick up a poorly hidden key or flip a switch. Usually, this means that there is a finely carved, perfectly square hole in the wall or ceiling near to you for your spirit form to slink through. Do so, and there will be a bright blue glowing thing for you to interact with. This interaction opens the door. This is how nearly every “puzzle” in WW plays out. I can only think of a handful of individual puzzles that do not play out in the same way, though they themselves were no more complex than filling a hole or playing Simon Says with a moveable object. The simple puzzle design falls in line with the game’s progression; it’s largely linear, with nary a handful of instances where you will have to seek out an item outside of the area you’re already in. Even then, though, the item’s location is always spelled out for you, so this is really no more than a mode of adding longevity to this short adventure. And it is short. In total, I completed the game in under three hours.

Whew, that was a lot of negativity. How about we move on to the more positive aspects of Willows? Speaking purely of the in-game graphics and art style, my opinion is decidedly varied. On one hand, the environments that you explore never amount to anything special, and much like the dialogue, they are content with remaining largely serviceable. The same can be said for the few human characters in-game, who, along with some stilted animations, look oddly plain. This is in stark contrast to my favorite portion of the game, the ghost designs. Their visages reflect how they died, and their appearances range from the grotesque to cringe inducing. Their designs are absolutely phenomenal, and it’s evident where the best of the artistic talent went in the creation of this game. The same can be said for Elena’s own spirit form, whose flowing hair and glowing visage look fantastic, especially in the light of the full moon in outdoor areas.

While the dialogue between yourself and haunting spirits itself does the overall narrative little favor, your interactions with the ghosts of the mansion’s grounds are enriched by the previously mentioned collectible notes scattered along your path throughout the game. Each is one of several diary entries left by the formerly living, and each tells a tale of their final days. While few of them are terribly unique in their subject matter, finding that final piece of each story provided me a greater driving force for playing than the main narrative itself.

As negative as this review has been, the greatest fault I can levy against this game is not what it does poorly, but rather in what it does not even attempt to do. Given all that has already been done with a similar ability in other games, why is Elena’s spirit walking ability as limited as it is? The game is content with delivering only the most lackluster and plain variation possible. And the dialogue... in an adventure title such as this, gameplay often takes a backseat to the narrative. Only, in this case, both aspects are severely limited in their designs. If the sole gameplay mechanic is to be as limited as it is, why was the dialogue not given greater love, to compensate? The game is so filled with potential, and occasionally, this potential appears as though it’s so near to bubbling to the surface, only to be pushed back down below by weak interactions and the umpteenth recycled door “puzzle”.

I did not hate my time with Whispering Willows. Though admittedly, my want to love it so completely has perhaps made me more critical of its faults. I’ll leave it at this: Whispering Willows, for all of its promise, is content with providing only an unenthusiastic effort on its part. For every glimmer of something fresh and unique, of which there are a few, Willows buries it under less-than-uninspired dialogue and consistently recycled puzzle design. I beat the game, with all of my fumbling, in under three hours. By the end, my only thoughts were on what could have been, had this game taken just a little more risk, rather than on my final moments with Elena. There just isn’t enough content or thought put into Whispering Willows to make it fully recommendable.

6.5/10
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32 of 33 people (97%) found this review helpful
Recommended
1.8 hrs on record
Posted: October 7, 2015
How much gameplay do you expect from your games? It's a salient question in this post-Greenlight age, with many games offering impressive gimmicks and visuals propped up by only an hour or two of gameplay. Whispering Willows is just such a game, a no-frills adventure game with some charming graphics and a neat mechanic that's over before you know it.

You play Elena, the Native American daughter of a groundskeeper at a super spooky mansion. He disappears, you gear up to find him, and the next thing you know you're in the ♥♥♥-end of some pretty dire catacombs. Like I said, it's an extremely straight-forward side-scrolling adventure game with notes to find, keys to collect, and notes to read. The one gimmick is astral projection, which releases your fabulously-coiffed soul to roam, slipping through tiny cracks, moving mundane objects, and talking to dead people. This mechanic develops one or two additional uses over the course of the game, and is pretty fun to dink around with, since there are no living NPCs.

Game flow is clear and steady, for the most part. There's no map but the mansion and its environs are usually simple enough to follow to your next objective. The hand-drawn graphics are delightful and well-animated, though I must admit the horrific condition of the spirits you encounter clashes a bit with the lighter, kids anime art style. The story rides a fine line between dark and silly and I was engaged the whole time, it's just that the whole time was about 90 minutes. It's a short, short game and if you like the simple gameplay, you'll surely be left wanting more. I'm glad I didn't Kickstart it, but if you pick it up on sale it's a charming little adventure and I can't knock it for anything but its length.
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