Welcome to EXPlay, (Explain & Play) the review series where we care not for scores but tell it how it is when it comes to every game we get our hands on, whilst also taking the time to include some lengthy gameplay, to give you the reader, the chance to shape your own impressions and views whilst watching and reading. In this installment, we’re covering Beacon Pines by developer Fellow Traveler.
Beacon Pines: (The Explanation)
In Beacon Pines, you play as Luka Vanhorn, navigating through a point-and-click narrative adventure to uncover a mystery. You move Luka from scene to scene learning about the town’s many secrets while engaging in dialogue with characters, aiding in side quests, and discovering charms that can change the outcome of conversations.
In my early game time, I learned a bit about Luka and his missing parents, while he lives with his grandmother. Her overprotective nature leads Luka to sneak out and try and have some fun, quickly leading to a mystery on the outskirts of town. Along the way, you will meet some helpful friends that quickly get into trouble, and require Luka to come to their rescue.
Another aspect of the game is the book narrator telling the story of Luka and Beacon Pines where key points in the narrative can be changed by using various charms you find in the world. These charms lead you down branching paths of the story, which can be replayed once you find new charms creating a whole new branching path. This unique twist in the narrative genre of game storytelling was simple and does lead to some repetitive areas, but usually, at least in the early game, the repeating areas were shortened by the Chronicle time jumping.
Beacon Pines will wow you with its unique storytelling and overall graphical look and feel. It’s not often that we get a game that looks like an animated movie with detailed backgrounds, characters, and well-designed gameplay moments. I can already tell that the story in Beacon Pines will take me along gripping story beats and moments of joy and sadness.
Beacon Pines has a quippy style in its writing as you meet more and more characters. The anamorphic inhabitants of Beacon Pines are each unique and memorable, especially those close to the main story. If you are a fan of point-and-click story games, Beacon Pines is sure to scratch that itch and compel you to stick along for the journey. I wholeheartedly recommend picking up the game and adding it to your Switch library.
Beacon Pines: (The Gameplay)
Developer: Hiding Spot
Publisher: Fellow Traveler
Platform: Nintendo Switch (eShop)
Category: Adventure, Puzzle
No. of Players: 1 player
Release Date: September 22, 2022 (EU & NA)
File Size: 935 MB