Storm Boy The Game – Switch Review

I’m not crying you are

I was not prepared for this encounter. 

Storm Boy The Game

Platforms: Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC, Mac, iOS, and Android
Release Date: 20/11/2018
Players: 1
Age Rating: 7+
Genres: Interactive Story / Adventure / Other
Developer: Blowfish Studios
Price (Switch Version): £5.39

An interactive retelling of Colin Thiele’s classic tale by taking control of both Storm Boy and Mr Pervival

What is it?

Based on Colin Thiele’s 1964 children’s book of the same name, Storm Boy takes place on the beaches of South Australia near the mouth of the Murray River, where the titular protagonist rescues orphaned pelican chicks, one of whom later becomes Storm Boy’s pet and best friend, Mr Percival.

What do you do?

You play the story out as the titular character Storm Boy progressing through what I assume are chapters from the original book. The game is very linear with regards to exploration. You simply move Storm Boy across the screen reading excerpts from the original story. Throughout the game and chapters you can participate in a selection of charming mini games which are not testing at all. You don’t even need to participate in the games if you wish. However in doing so you would miss out on some quite warming moments in the game which you see the relationship between Storm Boy and Mr Percival grow.

Mini games you say?

Yes as part of the interactivity in this lovely story, you can participate in various mini-games as both characters as well as participating in activities of which there are no end goals such as simply sailing your boat on the beach and diving in the ocean. There is no real aim for them, they’re just nice to participate in and read the additional excerpts of the story which further showcase the bond that Storm Boy and Mr Percival build.

Some beautiful bonding moments such as playing fetch with Mr Percival

Look and feel

Well just look at the screenshots already posted. It’s simplistic but rather quite beautiful. Some rather gorgeous backdrops of the beach in which you’ll encounter some sunsets, storms and sunny days. It’s just really pleasant on the eyes to look at and is pretty much perfect visualisation for the story being told as you play.

With regards to feel and playing, it’s so simple. When exploring you simply move the Switch analogue stick in the direction your heading, and as this is a very linear game, you’ll find that’s ‘Right’ for most of the time. As you progress parts of the story appear on the screen for you to read, if you moved too fast and didn’t catch all of the paragraph, simply press ‘Left’ and it’ll pop up again for you to read it all.

The mini-games appear as you move across the beach as icons and the narration also hints at you as to what to do. “Storm Boy would dream of flying”, to which you get the chance to take part in an activity flying a bird that Storm Boy is staring at.  

Pros and Cons

+ Its really quite beautiful
+ Its equally adorable

+ Very easy and chilled game to play.

– It’s hard to say this is a con, but it’s short. Less than 30 minutes short
– Maybe some hints required that some of the mini-games have no end.

The Verdict

Being honest despite Storm Boy being labelled as a children’s classic, I had never heard of it at all. Apparently it has a film out based on the book with a 2nd version of the film in production due to hit cinemas in 2019.

With the admission that I’d never heard of the book before, I was not prepared for what I was about to play. As I’ve touched up on the game visually is perfect for the story being told.

The game is so warm and charming and I really enjoyed reading the excerpts from the book which helped to explain why I was participating in the activities I was with Mr Percival. And come the end of this short experience I was left rather quite speechless. 

If you’ve never read the book but are tempted to pick this game up, keep it that way, play the game first then do research into the book after. The way I was left feeling at the end of the game not knowing the story was such a wow moment. If you know the story in the first place, then the brief experience of playing this game probably wouldn’t hit home as much as going in with no idea of the story.

With regards to price, how much do you pay for a book or cinema ticket these days? They’re not all that far off each other, for around the same price you can pick up this game and get just the same if not more hard hitting impact of the story. Please do bear that in mind if you think this price for a 30 minute game is steep.

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