Deadalic Entertainment, the creators of such critically acclaimed games as, “Edna and Harvey:Harvey’s New Eyes” and the “Deponia” Trilogy hail from Germany, and judging by their website they intend to stick around for a long time, making games for both the PC and mobile frontiers. Their latest title,” Night of the Rabbit” still bolsters this impression. The game is a fully picturesque, interactive pop-up book that rushes with imagination and cheery lush environments that is inviting to the eyes.
Jerry Hazelnut has only two days left in his summer vacation. He lives in a humble house by the side of the forest with his mother. He is a scrappy yet kind heart-ed boy who one day aspires to become a magician. Players will lead Jerry through his private backyard of animal statues and guppy-ponds until he sees a magical letter delivered to his mailbox, that sends him on is way to meet the Marius de Hoto, a mysterious rabbit that hails from a prestigious line of fabled guardians of another world. He call himself a called Treewalker. The Marquis promises Jerry that he can train him to become a magician, and the two are taken to Mousewood, a parallel world with the help of a the Marquis’ divine powers.
The visuals of this game, more precisely the storybook backgrounds and soft smooth animations, however small are one of the first things a player will notice and appreciate once they start it up. Images have thick, curvy borders and are mostly colored with either stark bright colors, or subdued earthy tones like the trees, ponds, or rocks. Multiple backgrounds create a parallax effect that many people learn to appreciate. Fog and snow particle systems also look realistic and are well implemented. As Jerry walks across the screens, it is a treat to see the entire world fleshed out and brought to life. Almost every room in the game has some simple animations. Between the characters or the objects in the environment the momentum of the game is never lost by a stillness that other point and click adventures may suffer.
Night of the Rabbit also has a varied soundtrack that will keep the flow of each region appropriately. Each track has a short loop so if a player can’t find their way, they will hear a small tune over and over. But, there are many small tracks, so that each room has a unique meaning that also keeps the player satisfied. There is of course, an extensive amount of voice acting that is varied, although for a German game I am somewhat surprised that all the characters have refined British accents. Either way, everyone who speaks is articulate, captions are readily available should anyone need them.
This point and click adventure games does not skimp on difficulty or appeal as it is a traditional adventure of the its genre. What takes this writer away is the great length of the game-play the title has to offer. People who are fans of adventure games know what to expect and will enjoy this game for its aesthetic appeal. Someone unfamiliar to point and lick games may want to start elsewhere, for this is game is mired with many tropes of the genre. Including but not limited to: Finding a well blended collectible between the backgrounds and static environment. Combining found items to create the solution to a problem, and Non-linear and intertwined mission progression, backtracking and experimenting heavily with items and the environment.
It all sounds like a plethora of gaming potential an indie designer would argue to the death, but with a slow pace, sometimes hammed up dialogue and lack of insightful clues, the difficulty is retaining interest in the beginning.
But, however this review is not ready to say there’s no ingenuity in this game. And in fact this little problem gets easier after a while. The game does give the player an item that gives the player a second sight, and locates all the possible objects that Jerry can interact with. An extremely useful tool that, while combined with the journal and clues picked up by characters, solving puzzles a lot more intuitive than in the opening act.
Whenever Jerry solves one problem, another arises, the game never leaves Jerry without a current goal. A keen eye will notice stickers and dew drops are Mousewood that are actually collectibles not readily see-able with the trick mention before. These collectibles are part of the game and are required to complete the 17 achievements issued both in-game and on Steam. The game sells as a standalone or a premium package that, “Includes eight, “audio stories” from the Mousewood.” according to the Steam page.
The designer of this game, Matthias Kempke, has created a heart-felt story that starts of funny and, evolves into dramatic and chilling narrative as the game progresses. Jerry our hero, a boy who leaves his comfortable home to pursue his dream, and may never be able to return again. A boy matures into a magician and the consequences and responsibilities must be acknowledged so.
As an added feature to the game short stories featuring many of them games characters were written well before the release of this game. that where originally written by Kempke too. These stories are available as bonus material after completing the main game. This is only one testament to the amount of detail out into this title. The world is a new and exiting one fit for a child’s endless adventure.