Seasons After Fall is a new side-scrolling puzzle-platforming game developed by Swing Swing Submarine, and published by Focus Home Interactive. Throughout the game you play as a spirit, referred to as ‘Little Seed’, controlling a fox who’s objective is to acquire the powers of the four seasons. You are helped along this journey by a mysterious character, who’s origins we do not know, or what they want.
First of all, the imminent objective, as told by the mysterious character, is to harness the powers of the seasons. To do this, you have to travel left or right, up and down through new areas all effected by the seasons. Going a certain length in a direction, you will meet up with a Guardian, a being who protects the seasons. These Guardians produce some sort of spirit after meeting with them. This spirit guides you back to the original area, known as Sanctuary, where it merges with your spirit, giving you control over the corresponding season. Once merging with more than one spirit, you can use the ‘Power of the Seasons’, which allows you to change the season at will, to freeze a lake to walk on for example.
The controls of the game are very simple. Being left, right, jump, bark and Power of the Seasons. Bark allows you to move small critters, or open flowers to create a platform to jump on. Barking twice allows you to change the season to whatever spirit you are following. The Power of the Seasons, as previously mentioned, lets you change the seasons at will to your own advantage.
The first thing you’ll notice while playing is the incredible artstyle. It’s almost as if it’s drawn on Microsoft Paint. The vibrant colours are very appealing to the eye, for example, a dark cave could have bright orange vines and red flowers during the autumn season, or the winter season has a strong purple background. The animation is very smooth, from the running and jumping, to the little struggle to climb a ledge that is just out of the fox’s jump range. Every part of the game is pleasurable to look at, and who can resist a cute little fox as a main character.
The background music is very relaxing. I’m a sucker for game music, especially if it makes me want to listen to it all day. The harmonies of stringed instruments clashing, creating a beautiful piece of art. While working with the artstyle, it completely calmed and relaxed me. It;s the kind of game that you’d go back to after a few rough rounds of another game that got you heated. Something you can lean back on when you want a slower, less thoughtful experience.
That said, it’s not a very challenging game. Yes, you may have to think a bit about how you may reach a high up ledge, or how to get around an obstacle, but it’s not strenuous on the brain in any way. This game being as it is, it seems it may be aimed at a much younger audience, which puts me off it slightly. As much as I’m loving the game, I love a game that challenges me, makes me really think about what I have to do next.
My overall opinion is that it’s a very engaging game. Though it is quite slow, the music and art makes you want to see more. The calmness lets you play for long stretches of time without getting completely bored. It’s beautiful to look at, beautiful to listen to, with un-challenging, easy gameplay. I would recommend this game, to those who want a different experience than the popular, more fast-paced games around, or to a younger audience who would like to start on puzzle games. Overall, a solid 8/10 game for me. More challenging puzzles, or possible a clearer storyline would bump it up to a 9, but it is still a very enjoyable game to play.