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Rime (Switch)

Posted by GG Goblin On December - 12 - 2017

An emotional journey.

 
After what seemed like quite a wait, Tequila Works, with a little help from Tantalus Media, launched the puzzle adventure Rime on Nintendo’s Switch hybrid console. Seeing as the game launched a while back for the other consoles and on PC, there may not be many gamers with an interest in Rime that haven’t already played it. However, the allure of playing the game anywhere with the Switch’s handheld mode may well be just enough to tempt multiplatform gamers to try the Switch version out. I hope they are not disappointed.

 
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Rime is one of those games that uses mystery to the max. It all starts with a young boy shipwrecked on a mysterious island. The player isn’t given any guidance on what to do at this point, or where to go aside from the vaguest hint at a building in the distance. It is one of those sort of games where the player gets to figure things out for themselves, while trying to decipher whatever meaning the developers placed behind the locations and events.

 
It is not a chore to start exploring though, Rime is an incredibly beautiful game when at its best. Even from the very beginning, with the stunning beach and the seagulls flapping around overhead, squawking, it is easy to want to explore this mysterious location. With a wide variety of different environments to explore and different things to see, Rime is a game that will often leave the player simply wanting to stop and stare at the things around them.

 
But there is a story to Rime that goes beyond just exploring. Well, I say story, but really it is more of a journey. And an incredibly emotional journey at that. The emotional pull of Rime is played out through sounds from the protagonist, and enhanced with the gorgeous visuals and the out standing soundtrack. If you are a gamer who has been known to shed a tear when playing, it may be worth getting the tissues ready.

 
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Exploration is a large part of the game, with the player being left to their own devices in working out how to get to their destination. There is also plenty of opportunity to go off the beaten track and hunt for some of the games collectibles, which do lean towards the very well hidden category. The mystery of the game is such that, once everything is revealed, a further playthrough would not be unlikely, which is nice for those looking to find all of the secrets in the game, and considering that the game can be finished in as little as six hours.

 
It may seem like there is very little threat in Rime from playing the early game, asides from falling off ledges during some of the games jumpy platforming sections. However, the player will find themselves moving through different themed parts of the game, with slightly different gameplay and the inclusion of more threat. Rime is no meandering Sunday stroll, and there are plenty of sequences in the game that are genuinely tense. Not that this will stop you from wanting to pause to take in the scenery, but there is a time and a place.

 
Puzzles make up the core of the interactive gameplay, again with a nice variety that will follow the theme of whatever area the player is in. While few of the puzzles will give players more than a pause in how to solve them, there are some head scratchers to be solved. The puzzles tend to be of the environmental type, moving things around for example to make something happen, and may occasionally require some creative thinking to get past. Much like the soundtrack and the visuals, the puzzles are a true highlight in Rime.

 
But then things take a turn for the worse. It was well documented that Rime suffered with framerate drop on the other consoles. On the Switch, things are even more grim. Playing the game in docked mode, the drop in framerate can be irritating, but the game still looks lovely and plays well. Take the Switch off of the dock and hop into handheld mode, and the dropped framerate makes the game very difficult to play. Add to this the fact that the visuals appear to be downgraded in handheld mode, and everything looks blurry and so far removed from how the game should look, and I cannot recommend playing the game in handheld mode at all. Which is a realy shame as that would be the reason most multiplatform gamers would have waited for the Switch version.

 
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Tequila Works’ emotional puzzle adventure brings feeling to the Nintendo Switch. A stunning looking game, Rime also packs in equally impressive story telling, soundwork and puzzle solving. While not suitable in handheld mode, and still having some performance issues in docked mode, Rime manages to be a heartfelt, engrossing journey that is very easy to enjoy.

 

 ★★★★★★★☆☆☆ 



 

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