Title: Elliot Quest
Console: 3DS version
Release Date: May 2017 (3DS); November 2014 (Steam)
How we got the game: We received a free digital download code for the Nintendo 3DS from the developers and Miketendo.
Miketendo and PlayEveryware were gracious enough to provide us with a digital copy of Elliot Quest. Rachel and I had never heard of the game before, but we were eager to try it out after seeing trailers for it on Steam.
The developers even mentioned that the game was inspired by Zelda II: The Adventure of Link, which is a game we’ve never played, but we do love Zelda. At first glance, Elliot Quest seems simple and complex at the same time. It looked like a fun adventure game so we were eager to give it a try.
The gameplay was pretty straightforward, even if it did take us a few minutes to get used to the controls and buttons for the 3DS. You can configure them, of course, but we stuck with the default settings, figuring out that B was Jump rather than the usual A button. Your character — Elliot — has a bow and unlimited supply of arrows to defend himself with against monsters around the world, with the ability to upgrade your offensive, defensive, and magic skills along the way.
The beginning is simple enough. Elliot can run with the control stick, jump, and shoot arrows. The more you play and the more bosses you defeat, you gain experience tp upgrade your skills and you also learn new skills. You can a tornado power and fire arrows, just to name a few. Plus, you gain a double jump and even later on a triple jump.
The triple jump and fire are probably my favorite upgrades! Each upgrade helps you move through the world, giving you access to previously unavailable areas, and helping you become stronger for future boss fights. However, it was a touch difficult to get back to previous areas with the world map. It’s as if the game was trying to be similar to an open world, allowing the player to go wherever they want as long as they could get past the obstacles, but there were no markings to help differentiate where we had been already. It may have worked better if there was some sort of warping system to reach areas we had already been to.
A warping system would have been nice! Still, it was pretty cool how they created each area different so that we would want to (or have to) go back and explore it some more. It wasn’t so that the gameplay was first this, then that. We had a lot of possibilities of where to go and what to do next. However, there was quite a bit of lag the longer we played which made it frustrating to want to explore more places. It was so slow that we wanted to just press forward or stop playing all together.
The lag was a bit of an issue, especially around the desert and mountain areas, usually places that had a lot going on in terms of obstacles and enemies. However, the developers were awesome and did get in touch with us regarding the lag, mentioning that they were working on and submitting a patch to Nintendo to rectify it. By the sounds of it, the lag is a 3DS issue rather than Steam. The fixable lag was generally the biggest issue regarding the gameplay.
The lag certainly wasn’t a huge issue since that tends to happen with games and technology in general. As annoying as it was, we pressed on and continued the game, restarting every time the lag happened. That seemed to help for a little while anyway.
Elliot Quest was definitely charming with its graphics and music. The graphics were reminiscent of the earlier Legend of Zelda games for the NES, but with plenty of colors and backgrounds to make Elliot and the foreground’s world pop.
The graphics, though pretty simple, were amazing and I felt they were a perfect fit for the game. There are some objects that look like they’re part of the background, but you can actually jump on them which helps you along the way. The music is upbeat and catchy with each new scene and the sound effects are oddly satisfying. I love collecting the coins in this game mainly for the sound effects.
The sounds effects are fun, yes, but I suspect you’re more interested in the money, haha! I especially love the music for the boss fights. They always seem to keep me pumped up for the battle and, even if I end up dying, it’s easy for me to dive right back into the fight and get into a good groove with the music.
The boss battles were a lot of fun. I think my favorite music overall were the side areas. There were areas you had to go through to get to a certain place on the world map and that kind of music was calm and peaceful. It was as though Elliot was just continuing on through a lull in his journey with minimal monsters around to attack him.
The main story is told to us through bits and pieces as we move forward in the game. I don’t want to explain too much due to spoilers, but the basic gist is that Elliot is trying to defeat evil Satar and save the island. However, it seems he’s trying to piece together the story himself as he’s confused about certain things. For example, he can’t die.
He decided that the island Guardians would be able to help him, prompting him to go from temple to temple to earn the Guardians’ powers in order to confront Satar. Having the story fed to us in pieces as we maneuver our way around the world definitely kept our interest piqued throughout the game. This technique made us want to keep playing, to figure out what Elliot was actually doing and why.
It certainly kept our interest, though I’ll admit that when we first started playing I recall shouting, “What is this? What are we doing? What’s going on?” Then the pieces fell into place and it was fun trying to figure out what exactly Elliot was trying to do, who Cara and Satar were, and the game as a whole.
Elliot Quest has three unique endings depending on your choices throughout the game, giving players plenty of incentive to fire up the game after the first go-round. While the story itself is fairly linear, the overworld map does not have to be, allowing players to explore however they want as long as they have the correct tools to get around certain obstacles.
While this is a fine idea for the world map, there are no markings on it. Nothing is labeled and even after you complete an entire area, it doesn’t tell you. I have a hard time remembering where certain areas are on the map and that’s made it pretty difficult for me to go back to find certain items. But even that’s not a big deal. The overall game was fantastic to playthrough and I’ll definitely be playing it again in the future.
Have you played this game? What did you think? Let us know in the comments!