Built in partnership with the Alaska Native community, Never Alone is an atmospheric puzzle platformer that explores the harsh and vibrant world of Alaska Native stories. Delve deeply into the traditional lore of the Iñupiat people of the Arctic for a game experience like no other.
User reviews: Very Positive (414 reviews)
Release Date: Nov 18, 2014

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Recommended By Curators

"A beautiful, fascinating exploration of a world that may soon be nothing more than fantasy."
Read the full review here.

Recent updates View all (3)

December 5

Better Bola, Smarter Companion, and More



Takunasaarnakuni! (Long time no see!)

It's almost winter here in the Pacific Northwest, which makes it the perfect time to stay inside, keep warm, and play Never Alone with a friend, family member, or fox!

We've been hard at work on more improvements to the game in the past few weeks — based on feedback from fans, comments from reviewers, and our own wish lists. We wanted to get this update to the world before winter in North America officially begins and the endless blizzard returns.

Tonight's update (v1.2) includes the following improvements:

  • Bola throws are more accurate for both mouse and gamepad, and are now aimed where Nuna's arm is pointing
  • Many more minor improvements for the AI character in single-player mode
  • In single-player mode, if Nuna and Fox don't move for a few seconds, the active character will glow to highlight who is currently controlled
  • Blizzard gusts in the early levels are less punishing
  • Nuna will encounter fewer issues with pushing and pulling objects
  • Improvements for characters getting stuck in some spots
  • Updates for a range of minor bugs across all levels
Please refer to the Update Notes for additional details and instructions:

Update Notes FAQ Link

Thank you to everyone for your continued support of Never Alone. It means a lot to the entire team and the Alaska Native Community.
Sayakturutchiaq! (Cheers!)

The Never Alone Team
support@neveralonegame.com

12 comments Read more

December 4

Mac Version Coming in Early 2015



Unnusatkun! (Good evening!)

A few weeks ago we launched Never Alone on PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4 and have been humbled by the warm reception to the game in these cold autumn months. We are very excited to reach such a diverse audience around the world and have been inspired by your feedback and suggestions.

One simple but very common question we've been asked over the last few weeks is: will there be a Mac version?

We're thrilled to announce that the answer is yes! Never Alone will be available via Steam on the Mac in early 2015. We can't wait to share the story of Nuna and Fox with an even wider audience. Stay tuned to our Steam page, follow us on Twitter at @neveralonegame, or like our Facebook page for a release date!

Katigatchiarit, Mac users. (Pleased to meet you.)

The Never Alone Team
support@neveralonegame.com

16 comments Read more

Reviews

“Wonderful art direction and animation make Never Alone feel like an introduction to the folklore and traditions of a rarely seen culture.”
Should You Play This Game? YES – Kotaku

“There's a resonance to that title that seeps into the game, pushing you to engage with one of the game's themes through interaction...stunningly poignant - and quite brilliant.”
10/10 – Eurogamer

“In games we hadn't really seen our version of Niki Caro's brilliant film, Whale Rider, for example. But all that has changed now...an achingly beautiful game...This is the most beautiful Unity-developed game yet, and it's hard not to feel a shiver or two run down the back as you encounter the next chilly environment.”
5/5 – Digitally Downloaded

About This Game

Never Alone (Kisima Ingitchuna) is the first game developed in collaboration with the Iñupiat, an Alaska Native people. Nearly 40 Alaska Native elders, storytellers and community members contributed to the development of the game. Play as a young Iñupiat girl and an arctic fox as they set out to find the source of the eternal blizzard which threatens the survival of everything they have ever known.

Guide both characters in single-player mode or play cooperatively with a friend or family member as you trek through frozen tundra, leap across treacherous ice floes, swim through underwater ice caverns, and face numerous enemies both strange and familiar in the journey to save the girl’s village. (NOTE: Local co-op play requires at least one Xbox 360 or equivalent game controller)

In this atmospheric puzzle platformer, you will explore awe-inspiring environments, perform heroic deeds, and meet legendary characters from Iñupiaq stories — all narrated by a master storyteller in the spoken Iñupiaq language.

  • Play as both Nuna and Fox — Switch between the two companions at any time with one button press, or play side by side in local co-op mode, as you rely on the unique skills of each character to succeed in your quest. Nuna can climb ladders and ropes, move heavy obstacles, and throw her bola at targets to solve puzzles. Fox can fit through small areas that Nuna can't reach, scramble up walls, and jump to great heights.

  • Brave the harsh world of the Arctic — Run under, through, and atop the unstable structures of an abandoned coastal village. Explore the eerily quiet treetops of a mysterious, iced-over forest. Brave the fierce winds of the eternal blizzard. Only with the aid of Helping Spirits will Nuna and Fox have any chance of survival in a land where survival is impossible.

  • Unlock fascinating video insights — Elders, storytellers, and other members of the Alaska Native community share stories and wisdom about their culture, values and the amazing Arctic world encountered by players in over 30 minutes of interviews.

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows 7
    • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo E4500 @ 2.2GHz or AMD Athlon 64 X2 5600+ @ 2.8 GHz
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: GeForce 240 GT or Radeon HD 6570
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Hard Drive: 3 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: Xbox 360 or equivalent gamepad required for local co-op
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows 7 or newer
    • Processor: Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550 @ 2.8 GHz or AMD Phenom II X4 955 @ 3.2 GHz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: GeForce GTX 650 Ti or Radeon HD 7790
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Hard Drive: 3 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: Xbox 360 controller or equivalent recommended
Helpful customer reviews
118 of 126 people (94%) found this review helpful
7.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 18
See this small game as a chunk of interactive folklore. A small, fireside tale of limited scope but great appeal.

The gameplay is nice and smooth, and both the co-op and single player - where you'll switch between both controllable characters - are implemented well. The visuals are top notch and for me carried most of the attraction. The tilt-shift depth of field, the muted colour palette, the subtle lighting: they all complement each other well. There's many a wow moment there, even if this is a short experience. If you're looking for extended gameplay, this is not your fix. I completed the game in little over three hours. For me, that's fine. I like it when games don't overstay their welcome, or go for artificial extension.

If you're looking for challenging, innovative gameplay, or if you're expecting a prolonged experience: this game offers neither. What it does offer is rich and rewarding, but that is mostly by proxy of setting and design aesthetic. And if you like those, you're sure to like the documentary-style bits of film describing the Iñupiaq way of life and this people's cultural heritage. You discover these bits of background in-game. I found all but one in my single play-through without really looking.

In conclusion: this was a welcome dip in Iñupiaq culture and folklore. If you're interested in that, and don't mind a little puzzle platforming along the way, plunge right in.

I played this game in 1998p on a GTX680 without a single hitch.
Gorgeous views abound!

EDIT: a lot of reviewers mention a less-than-perfect partner AI. In fact, I didn't perceive it as such. Quite possibly because I still have quite a low opinion of most in-game AI I've encountered, I immediately assumed that during the single player experience, you're supposed to continuously flick back and forth between characters. In fact, I found it one of the more fun gameplay mechanics to keep switching as quickly as possible. When there was a gap to be jumped, I jumped with one character first, flicked to the other mid-jump, jumped again, and flicked back before landing. Try it out. You'll not only encounter much fewer of these glitches, but you'll have some more fun along the way.
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100 of 105 people (95%) found this review helpful
5.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 20
A stunningly beautiful, scenic story filled with traditional lore and love from Alaska natives. The trust, adoration between the little girl and the fox is full of spirit. The mini documentary - several outside the game play were rather interesting. It was nice to see another way of life and culture. I would have loved to have been told stories like this when I was a little girl.
A game worth checking out and information to take in and value their sharing. So lovely!
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65 of 66 people (98%) found this review helpful
5.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 20
First time writting a personal review and English is my second language, so bear with me ^_^

Never Alone (Kisima Ingitchuna), is an amazing game which teachs people (young and old) about Iñupiat, an Alaska Native people's myth legend, called Kunuuksaayuka. Of course there is a difference between the myth that is told and the game concerning the characters (in myth is about a boy but in game is about a girl, of course the story is the same though) as also it has a very interesting gameplay.

Now, the game is a platform type with a type of puzzles (which in first look you will think that it might be difficult but it is not) which Nuna (the main story character) have to solved with her trusted "Bola" and her white Fox friend (the second game character), of course you will have your "trials and error" moments but this is how all platform-puzzle games are.

The game can be played as a single player which you can change back and forth with Nuna and Fox which in return the second character will be controlled by AI, as also you can play the game in Local Co-Op (for the moment, maybe in the future we will have online Co-Op too) with a second controller (already you can use a keyboard as control but for keybinding, at the moment, you have to change them yourself through game file but the developers are working on it for a better solution).

Of course you might find some bugs in the game but these bugs aren't "game breaking" (as I have noticed from my point of gameplay) and the developers are note them down in order to fix them.

Now about the conclusion if I recommend this game or not.

Get the game if:

1) If you like other cultures myths and legends, platform and puzzle games, then go for it you will not regret it (I haven't ^_^) because also it has "Cultural Insights" videos that you must collect during your gameplay and watch them either pausing the game or (better) after finishing the game.

2) If you want to play with a family member of yours and/or friends, this is a great choice but bear in mind that it is in local Co-Op, it doesn't have (yet) internet Co-Op. For those who want to play the game with their children, I suggest you to first play the game in single mode and then decide if your children can play with you (due to "trial and error" moments). As for the "PEGI - 12" that is mentioned in the shop page about having violence in the game, it isn't the violence that most games have but only a violence that you can find in and children's story book and/or cartoon (again do play it in single mode and you decide).

Don't get the game if:

1) If you get easily frustrated that makes you "drop" the game, then don't get it as this game will have a lot of "trial and error" moments.

2) If you get easily angry because of some bugs in game which makes you "drop" the game (which the devs are going to fix)

3) If you prefer to play the game right away in online Co-Op (better wait when it will implemented)

4) If you get extremely sad during some sad moments (which in the end it doesn't ^_^)

5) If you don't like short games (you can finish it in a few hours but this is how telling stories are)


As I said in my posts in the forum that this will be my opinion after finishing the game and having a clear view of it and it is upto you to "take it or leave it" (it is your own choice and not what we write).

As for me, I am very grateful for the developers and Iñupiat people for making this great game. Through the game not only we learn about Iñupiat folklores and traditions but also it is a good lesson about environment (watch the videos, after collecting them) and community.

This is a type of game genre that is missing from game industry, games that are created out of pure cultural folklores and traditions.

As my ancestors once said: "Those who forget their history, language and traditions, at the end they will be forgotten"
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55 of 59 people (93%) found this review helpful
5.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 21
Intro
Never Alone is a game that I’m sure many people will love. It has amazing storytelling and you can work through this little puzzle platformer completely by yourself or together with a friend.
And even though the platforming segments won’t blow anyone away, what’s there is solid, if only a little bit glitchy sometimes.

After only a small introduction you’re put in control of a little nameless girl who wants to find the source of a blizzard that threatens to destroy their way of life. Along the way she will meet a fox that will tag along and help her get through some of the tougher areas. The fox has the ability to jump higher and can fit through smaller areas humans normally can’t pass. Ultimately, the girl will also help the fox by moving obstacles and destroying them with her bola, which acts like some kind of slingshot.

Gameplay
This is yet another 2.5D platformer which means that pretty much everything is modeled in 3D but you’re watching it all from a 2D-plane. You’ll be walking, climbing, running and jumping through all kinds of icy environments like abandoned villages and watery caves. Since the game takes place in Alaska you obviously don’t have to expect sunlit beaches and lush forests here.
The story itself is told by a narrator. There are small animations being shown from time to time that push the story forward and during a level a few lines are also usually spoken. These spoken lines usually describe the events you’re currently experiencing.

As I already mentioned the game can be played alone or co-operatively with a friend. If you decide to play alone you’ll be able to control both the girl and the fox and you can switch between them on-the-fly with the press of a button. The AI will then take over the other character and help and follow you as best as possible and it does this unexpectedly well. There were just a couple of times where the AI didn’t do what I expected it to do but that problem was quickly solved by switching characters.
The way the AI reacts is surprising and admirable, especially for a relatively unknown game like this. I didn’t expect to see something like this unless it was an AAA title. But yes, enough about that.

The game does have a few glitches that I think could easily be avoided. Sometimes the physics get really weird when one of your characters gets squashed. It’s nothing game breaking but it’s weird to see and it throws you out of an otherwise lovely experience. Then you have the controls which aren’t always as tight as they should be. I’ve had multiple times where I pushed into a certain direction only to see my character perform it with less velocity resulting in death. Note that it works fine most of the time but a little tweaking couldn’t have hurt. This is yet another thing that could easily have been avoided. Otherwise this is a very technically impressive title, with extremely fast loading times. I think loading a level takes a mere two seconds before you can play. This is impressive to say the least.

Graphics & Audio
The characters are well animated and cutely designed. They have small details like fur and the girl’s hood moving in the wind. The girl also seems to be walking deeper through the snow while the smaller and lighter fox can practically walk on it. Of course, there’s a lot of snow so most of the things you’re going to see are white or blue. The atmosphere is done really well.
The sounds the girl and the fox make are cute but are usually only heard whenever one of them dies. You won’t hear a peep from them otherwise, because the narrator will be telling the story here and not the characters.
And I can’t really remember the music, which must have been quite subtle then. At least I can say that it wasn’t distracting.

Length
Please note that this isn’t a long game. Like many other narrative games the goal is to tell a story and not to let the game drag on and on by giving you more and more until you finally get bored with it. A level usually takes 10-15 minutes to complete and a complete playthrough should take you anywhere between 1,5-2 hours. It speaks for itself that playing this completely alone will probably take you a little longer because you have to constantly switch between characters whereas if you have a buddy you can control both characters simultaneously. In any case, 2 hours is more than enough and I’m actually glad that it wasn’t longer because that would’ve impacted the experience a little. For the completionists there are owls to be found that will unlock short movies that usually give you a little backstory about the current level or scene. The owls aren’t very hard to find and with a little effort you might even be able to collect them the first time you finish the game.

Closing
Never Alone is a beautiful little game. It’s not as emotional as Journey or To The Moon, but then again; it’s trying to tell a different kind of story, a story that most of us probably aren’t even familiar with. Therefore this is a game that you should definitely play. It might not be long but if you care about the experience itself you won’t mind, trust me.

[Rating: 80/100]
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45 of 47 people (96%) found this review helpful
1.3 hrs on record
Posted: December 2
Video games as art seems to be the most recent movement within the genre and the latest evolution in what art is and can be, from giant names like Myst, Shadow of the Colossus, and Journey, but also from smaller works with The Secret of Monkey Island, Grim Fandango, and I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream, all of them share a common theme - art, whatever that may be, it’s becoming harder and harder to deny that the medium of video games can produce art on a visual level, audio level, emotional, and even spiritual planes. They can confront our views of life and existence or to make social and political commentary with surgical precision (see Spec Ops: The Line). At the core of all of these is on aspect that has been part of art since its inception with early humankind: Story. From telling grand epics of battle to the most private and intimate moments between a child and a mother, the story holds it all together and Never Alone (Kisima Ingitchuna) is no different.

Gameplay: 88 B+
Never Alone is a typical platformer with basic controls, the essentials one could say, it fits the game’s environment and for the most part is accurate. There is some stiffness in the movements at times as well as some blind jumping and timing required by the player or pure luck in reaching that magical height with your Arctic Fox companion in order to get over a cliff ledge, it can cause some frustration, but it isn't game breaking. Having such basic controls allows the player to focus on solving a puzzle instead of remembering combos or a certain move set, more in the spirit of Sonic the Hedgehog, but at a slower pace.

Audio: 97 A+
The music and ambience, along with the narration, is the shining jewel upon this gaming achievement. Like many before, the soundscapes are just as big of a factor to the world building as the visuals, which we'll get to dive into later. The native sounds of not just the land, but of the people and the words spoken in the tongue of theIñupiat people, native to Northern Alaska and Canada, which you can simply listen to while you play or you can turn on the subtitles to read more into the story. Even more subtle sounds such as an owl’s hoot indicating a checkpoint or a gust of wind all add to the immersion without the need for hyper realistic visuals. There have been multiple instances when I was just let the game sit there and let the ambience play.

Visuals: 95 A
Speaking of the visuals, they are superb for its setting. Much like the mobile hit Badlands and Limbo before it, there is a simple aesthetic in contrasting features, the characters and environments are based off of the culture not just in how the people look and dress, but also in their art and how they see the world from the landscapes, the animals, and the elemental spirits which surround and inhabit every aspect of their lives. While Limbo kept with the black and gray hues and shades, Never Alone does venture into some darker and vibrant colors, though it would be completely understandable if you just let the game sit and watched the snow roll over the hills like an interactive screensaver. There are some clipping issues and edge detection problems here and there, but like with the controls, they aren't game breakers. The scenes are all quiet self contained, having their own quirks with the foreground and background complimenting each other instead of one vying for the player’s attention.

Content: 80 B-
Never Alone on Steam is a fairly large download, especially when compared to other games of it’s type and even giving some higher end game a run for their money, but this is mostly in part to the short videos you unlock as you play the game, some are easy while others can be more difficult to find. Each video gives an insight to the culture the game is based off of and made by, in a way it’s an interactive documentary. The game does offer a co-op feature allowing for two people to control both girl and fox at the same time and as I mentioned, a fair amount of hidden objects to find for the curious, all of which does not necessarily take away from the game, but its addition is a matter of perspective, the gain is not a better weapon or being able to jump higher, but knowledge. The videos are appropriately called “Cultural Insights” and are just that, snippets that barely scratch the surface. Replayability is not really a strong point of Never Alone, but more about the experience of hearing a story being told for the first time. It captures your and brings you along. The true replayability lies in the co-op as you may share the experience with other people and seeing their reactions and emotions to the story unfolding before them as you tag along as a secondary teller.

Multiplayer: 75 C
Not much to really say about the multiplayer aspect of Never Alone, a basic co-op in the vein of Sonic the Hedgehog , except when one or the other falls, you start over from the last checkpoint.

Design: 79 C+
This is quite possibly the hardest aspect to nail down let alone grade. The fact that this game exists is somewhat of a miracle, so to judge it too harshly would seem unfair being an indie title, not to mention a new type of game structuring, but that doesn't mean there aren't any faults. As mentioned before, there are some graphical flaws, difficulty curves, and other things that may turn away folks from this, especially those looking for a “perfect” experience, but experiences like this doesn’t require perfection. Had this been made by a larger team and budget with similar faults, then one could expect a lower grade altogether. This is one of those times where the effort is what should remain in focus and not whether they colored in between all the lines.

Story: 90 A
The story of this game cannot be judged on its quality in terms of plot holes, quality, realism - this is a myth given an interactive element and thus must be taken as such. The story is told very well and and in a manner as if you were with a tribe elder telling you an ageless tale passed down from generation to generation. Having that tied right into the gameplay, the pacing is fully dependent on your progression through the game and with the soundscapes flowing in and out, accompanied by the art and visuals, the words ensnare you into investing with this girl and her fox as they trek along for the first time with you and for the innumerable times as a tale.


Verdict: 86/100 B
Never Alone is not alone in what it does and is part of an ever increasing trend in indie games taking on stronger story and art driven games, but the genre is still young with vast amount of themes to explore and interpret which we will dive into with time. The one thing Never Alone does well, that is not as common, is that it tells a good, solid tale without the curse of having every detail deconstructed, because you simply cannot without taking the magic away. It would be like trying to analyze Ulysses or Peter Pan on its realism or possibility and missing the point entirely. Too often we forget that an adventure is what we need in life instead of why we need an adventure. Never Alone is a step in the right direction for gaming to further evolve into a greater medium of depth and expression.
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46 of 49 people (94%) found this review helpful
7.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 26
Never Alone is the type of game that makes me loathe the Steam review system. A simple yes or no for a game does little to explain how strong of a yes or no you're really giving the game. Butwhen it comes down to it, the bottom line is that I can recommend this game and here's why:

This is one of those truly unique games that does something new and should be rewarded for the efforts in spite of it's short comings. I'm not normally a "list" guy, but I think it will suit this review well; so here's a list of pros and cons about this game.

Pro:
* The game has a truly unique story that tells the tale of a traditional Inuit legend.
* The game's visuals stand out, whether it be the gameplay graphics or the animated story segments in between chapters.
* You can really get a sense of how much passion the developers put into this project; they really wanted to share their history and culture with people and found a unique way to do it via gaming media.
* There's the option of playing co-op locally. I didn't play co-op at all, opting for a single player experience, however, from what I could tell while using the switching mechanic to play solo, the game should work well in co-op and the story pulls you in so that you can really bond and share an experience with whomever you play it with.
* The unlockable cultural insights vignettes are really well done and enjoyable. They keep things short and to the point where you're given enough to be interested but left wanting more.
* As a single player experience, there were some really nicely designed sections that proved to be challenging and rewarding.

Cons:
* Those well done unlockable cultural insights are locked away behind the collectible system in the game. Most are easy to find and the chapter select menu gives you a count of how many you've found in a chapter. As I wanted to know more and more about the Inuit and found myself unable to do so until I found more collectibles, I was slightly irritated.
* There are some really unfair sections of the game as well as some sections where the goal/objective is rather obtuse/unclear. I had quite a number of deaths I felt were unfair.
* The game is pretty short... you can probably knock it out in an afternoon, especially if you're playing co-op. And after you've found all the cultural insights, there's not a lot of replay value here.

So overall, I give this game a yes, as I believe the experience provided is greater than the sum of it's successes and failures.
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41 of 46 people (89%) found this review helpful
1.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 18
One-hour review: Boy is this game ever pretty. The core idea of "hey let's teach our kids about our culture by making a video game" is neat and I'm happy to support that. I'm liking the Lost Vikings kind of thing, and if you have a controller you can even play co-op with the girl and fox. They are pretty darn cute, and hey, walljumping fox. There's a lot of cultural background videos that are pretty cool.

Downsides: It's a little glitchy once in a while, especially the partner AI is not good at not dying. This isn't so bad because you don't lose anything if you die and the checkpoints are close together, but it is a little frustrating. I've started to think of the critter as Derpfox no matter how cool he is.

I feel like I'm about halfway through the game after one hour, but the cultural videos seem like they are a big part of the experience and I haven't watched many. Maybe think of this as an interactive cultural exhibit: you're paying for that, not for a huge amount of gameplay.
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79 of 108 people (73%) found this review helpful
0.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 20
While the artistry of this game is exceptional the game leaves a great deal to be desired from the controls to the level design. Some of the mechanics feel clunky.

The title is beautiful and I'm certainly glad I played it once, I cannot bring myself to recommend it to anyone from a game play perspective. And for one unfortunate reason. Controlling two characters turns into a nightmare during some parts of the game with the AI lagging behind and getting crushed by various objects, or trying to jump onto a moving iceberg too late and dying. Other times the AI appears to just give up and throw itself into the ocean when nothing is wrong. With a second human player, as the game supports, and encourages, these problems are for the most part completely resolved.

If you HAVE NOT played this title yet, but intend to purchase or have already purchased it, I strongly recommend that you play it with a friend the first time. This may GREATLY improve your first impressions of the game, and your overall experience. The game will actually encourage this at the beginning when the characters are introduced, and I have to say I agree with them.

However, if you don't care about such things, it IS a beautiful game. The world has both a wonderful childlike quality to it with darker undertones present throughout.

Unfortunately Steam does not allow for a "Yes, I recommend the game, but under certain conditions option" but we can't have everything. If you enjoy puzzle platformers, or simply beautiful games, this may be something you would like.
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49 of 62 people (79%) found this review helpful
3.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 18
I enjoyed the story very much through my gameplay, good straight forward platformer here, not too hard and not too easy.
Pick this game up if you enjoy a good short Platformer with a nice and out of the ordinary story :)
Or heres my Walkthrough
http://youtu.be/rxkjxMTO8R4
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38 of 46 people (83%) found this review helpful
16.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 22
I must say this is a beautiful game very Antarctic, but based around Alaska and so differant from what i have seen before. The game is a Side Scrolling Platformer with a touching story to go with the game, you are able to play Co-op with a friend or family member or just go it Alone, switching between the Girl named Nuna and her new friend the cute white fox to help progress through the game, but remember your Never Alone you have the adorable white fox helping you along your journey. Be warned watch out for the hungry Polarbear you must run, jump, run, jump,and just run for your life.

Also sometimes the puzzles are a bit tricky to solve, so i watched youtube videos to help but only if i could not find my own solution to progress further in the game, and really the solutions where very simple to solve. This is not a difficult game to play although it took me longer than it should have, never the less, i enjoyed the game and i will play it again as i really enjoyed this game :)

You can also unlock ingame documentaries sharing the ways of the Alaska Native people and thier way of life, they are very touching storys indeed. We are all now facing climate change and this is very real fact and phenomena to this day, even the poor polarbear is slowly becoming extinct, and the ice caps are melting. So for me I believe my purchase of this game was worth the price i paid with some proceeds i think will go to the Alaska Native people to help them survive.

http://youtu.be/8yefBjvyTYM

Also the game is running really good now that an update came through today 22/11/14 so i am very pleased with the fixes all is running very well. Thankyou to the developers for this very intresting and beautiful game. Its great to see a team that is so dedicated to thier project , keep up the great work your all doing, and i hope to maybe see another of your beautiful games in the future or a Never Alone 2 in the making, Well done to all the team that brought this game to life ; )

Oh and the white fox is adorable too, I need a plushie white fox to cuddle now ;D
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25 of 27 people (93%) found this review helpful
1.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 19
I strongly suggest that anyone with the slightest antropological bent watch this game as soon as possible. I say watch because the gameplay is pretty run-of-the-mill puzzle-platforming and earns this recommendation almost wholly on the back of the excellent documentary footage (the "cultural insights") and the art direction.

The art direction is stunning. As I parsed the occasional glitch or two what kept me playing was the visual appeal of the game. The 3D models are tolerable and appropriately adorable for a game about a fox and a little girl, but the game's backgrounds and use of cultural imagery really make a generic-playing game look and feel special. There's love and heart in this game and its apparent in the art, in the music, and in the in-game narration. This is a very simple game being used as a platform to demonstrate this culture.

And, you know what? I'm cool with that. The idea of a game showcasing a community rarely given public space to talk about who they are is a decent one with a lot of potential. This is hopefully an early trailblazer both in terms of game development strategies and in terms of cultural connection. The 24 videos contained in the game are sometimes touching, as with the story of the girl riding a polar bear or memories of playing with Arctic Fox. They are sometimes informative, as are the ones discussing the importance of words like Sila or the stories of the Little People. They are all entertaining. The idea of playing a documentary like this is both interesting and reasonably well-applied here.

I look forward to this studio's next effort and applaud them for this game. While it hardly pushes envelopes with its platforming, it is a welcome change of scenery and a well put together exploration of the peoples of the Arctic. If you have no interest in these people, you will have no interest in this game. If this idea interests you, however, I strongly suggest you support this game and encourage this nascent genre of indigenous storytelling.
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22 of 25 people (88%) found this review helpful
0.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 19
Pros:
- The story is interesting and well presented.
- The art and presentation on the "lore art" makes this a pleasant gimmick.
- Cute white fox that tags along
- Coop

Cons:
- The freaking platforms can get extremely frustrating. Right now I'm stuck at the floating ice area due to glitchy collision detection. Either my character or my companion keep getting stuck on the sides of the crunching platforms, getting bounced off from the corners, turning around and falling into the water, or the companion lingers back just a tiny bit enough to get crushed by the ice.


So far, it's a beautifuly presented story, with an obnoxious platform element wedged in.

While I do recommend it, I also recommend either having lots of patience or taking your meds before playing.
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18 of 19 people (95%) found this review helpful
5.1 hrs on record
Posted: December 3
Insightful, colorful, and touching. Stunning graphics and simple gameplay allows you to take in and appreciate Never Alone's beautiful story and art. The idea for a community to use a video game for reaching out to the world and teach is a powerful one. I sincerely hope and look forward to more games like this in the future.
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23 of 28 people (82%) found this review helpful
4.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 18
Wow... There are so many things going through my head as I finished my playthrough of Never Alone. The biggest one is how the idea of this game was born out of the want to educate people about Native Alaskan culture. Upper One Games, brought into existence, through E-Line Media and Cook Inlet Tribal Council, have managed to produce an amazing and captivating game through stories from a culture most of us don't understand.

The first thing to discuss is the art style of Never Alone. Everything from character models to the environments are spectacular. Granted, the cutscenes sometimes took a bit of that sparkle away from the game, but the art while playing is downright gorgeous. I caught myself many times with my mouth wide open and eyes dried up from hardly blinking. The animations help ground you in the game. They are smooth and seamless, yet the characters have weight to their movements, immersing me further into the game. Environments are dynamic and interactive. Riding on trees through the forest, running away from polar bears, and climbing large animated objects give the game an action packed feel.

If I were to rate each section of the game serparately, the mechanics might have been rated the lowest. This is not to say the mechanics are bad, but everything else was on another level. The two character puzzle solving mechanic is brilliant, yet I don't think they took it far enough. Most puzzles in the game are one note and very straight forward. I felt like they could have expanded on the difficulty of the puzzles at some point, perhaps requiring more back tracking or more steps in certain puzzles to accomplish that. The game mechanics overall were good though, using the two characters simultaneously to solve puzzles, very interesting platforming, and dynamic environments that require the player to react accordingly. If Upper One Games is going to release a sequel to Never Alone, they need to develop more intricate puzzles.

Speaking of a two character puzzle solving team, the lack of character development for Nuna and the fox were actually very positive choices. Even though I'm an almost thirty year old white male, I could easily put myself in Nuna's shoes and feel like I'm the little girl trying to save my village. Sometimes no character development is the best choice for a game and its immersion. I felt a natural bond between the two characters, a friendship that evolves over the game. Words don't have to be spoken between Nuna and the fox, but the bond naturally develops as the player uses both characters to work out puzzles, giving a strong feeling of comradery.

Never Alone does a great job progressing the story. There are not many moments where I felt that I wasn't making progress towards something. The story is quick paced, including multiple nemeses, which provide smaller subset stories to the overall story arch.

Last but certainly not least is the sound quality in Never Alone. The music and ambient sound is what ties the whole game together. Upper One Games does a great job at setting the mood for whatever is happening on the screen with not just the visual quality but also the audio.

Congratulations to Upper One Games, for being the first Native American development company, and for nailing their first project. Hopefully we will see more high quality games coming from this company, albiet maybe a tad bit longer next time eh? :) Overall, you should definitely play this game, it finishes around 3 - 4 hours which might make the price too steep for the hours you will get out of the game. I gaurantee that those few hours will be a blast though.
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21 of 25 people (84%) found this review helpful
2.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 19
I normally dont like platform games, so I bought the game to just support the creators and the culture behind it, but the cultural content is so interesting that I keep playing it just to learn more. Also the musics and graphics are really really cute.
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17 of 18 people (94%) found this review helpful
2.6 hrs on record
Posted: November 19
Even if I wasn't biased growing up in Alaska, this game rocks!!! The art, music, and story are gorgeous! It's also very cheap, educational, and well worth the money. Highly recommended!!!
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22 of 27 people (81%) found this review helpful
2.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 29
Piece of art. Majestic looking piece of art.

Edit: Character controls also majesticly sloppy as hell. You can't even control the characters. Characters doing whatever the hell she-it wants.
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24 of 31 people (77%) found this review helpful
9.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 24
Warning: This game still has poor AI character movement and unresponsive controls, causing you quite hard times to play, kind of like the nightmare of mechanical frustration. I decided to recommend this game only under more improvements. I would suggest waiting a few more weeks for next improved patches and updates. - Then I will edit my review again.

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I loved the idea of sharing The Arctic People's culture through such an inspiring game. Aside from playing game, you would get to experience their cultural traditions, right from their perspectives which are amazing and rarely seen. The key of the game is its story. Please remind yourself to watch every single video, provided from your playthrough. You will surely have a lot to experience.

Even though I played in single-player mode, I also loved how you can play in co-op with a friend. You could switch to play the fox or the girl in the needed time even when you chose to play it in single-player. Well, I had to, because in some evidence I had to play as a fox and vice versa. It was fun!

The characters are cute. The relationship between the girl and the fox are beautiful. The puzzles are fun. The soundtracks are awesome. Great game, great story and great idea! The only reason I felt sorry for this game is its horrible controls. What a pity! So be patient and wait for some bug fixes, then you will have no regrets!
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14 of 14 people (100%) found this review helpful
3.6 hrs on record
Posted: November 19
An amazing game with a heart warming story. I thoroughly enjoyed every second of my playthrough, especially the cultural insights of the Inuit people. Although short, I believe I learned more about this fascinating culture through playing this game than I would have reading a book about it, simply because you hear the stories from the people themselves. There's a few bugs here and there but nothing game breaking. This has quickly became one of my favourite platformers and I look forward to playing through it again in co-op mode in the hope to unlock all achievements and cultural insights within this brilliant creation. Go ahead and spoil yourself with this one, it's worth it.
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13 of 13 people (100%) found this review helpful
3.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 20
Never Alone (Kisima Ingitchuna) is a game I was really looking forward to playing since it's announcement. The concept really intrigued me and the game looked ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ gorgeous. After finishing it, I believe I've got my money's worth, but it does leave some to be desired.

Yays:
-I actually learned something while playing, and you will too. The Alaskan Native culture is fascinating to learn about. The game features short unlockable videos called "Cultural Insights" that serve as a mini-documentary about the people's culture, beliefs, and way of living. It teaches us how they believe that everything on Earth has a spirit, how they pass down stories from generations, and even how awesome having an Arctic Fox as a pet is.

-The game's presentation and visuals are beautiful. For a game made on the Unity Engine, it's amazing to look at. While the game has a slightly cartoon-ish feel to it, the frozen lands of Alaska look wonderful. The sylization of the cutscenes are also great. In any other game I'd say it looked cheap, however in this game it's justified. You can see why when playing it.

-That fox, man, I mean. Dude, I want one.

-Puzzles aren't very unfair or cheap. You probably won't ever be stuck on a puzzle during your playthrough.

Neighs:

-Options are limited. No rebindable keys or graphics settings outside of "Low, Medium, and High" but for a 2D platformer, it's more forgivable.

-Jumping can be a little wonky at times. Sometimes, even when you're sure you nailed a jump your character will still grab onto the ledge first and pull herself up.

-The game was pretty clearly designed for two players, while most of the game works fine without two people, several parts near the end feel like a flustercluck of keeping track your two characters.

-AI is kind of dumb. They do a fair enough job of following you, but they can sometimes take too long to move, resulting in their demise.

-Very short experience, although your times may vary. I completed it in three hours while I've seen major sites take around four to six.

Overall, Never Alone is a very solid debut title for these developers and, hopefully, the start of an amazing new genre of video games. You're probably going to have a good time with it.
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