I decided to try something really crazy. Instead of waiting for games on Game Pass to be “Leaving Soon” maybe I’d try them when they first hit the service. My goodness sometimes I impress myself with this kind of out of the box thinking!
So this morning I devoted a couple of hours to Ravenlok, which is an action-adventure game that seems to be targeted at kids or folks who just want to chill and not be challenged very much. You play as little girl who has just moved to the country with her family. First order of business is helping mom and dad with the move-in. Everything seems so ordinary until you find a magic mirror that sucks you into a Lewis Carroll inspired fantasy world. You’re immediately declared as being Ravenlok, the savior of the world. Then you’re put to work. You just go along with it.
Ravenlok’s job is to run around and talk to vaguely creepy looking creatures to get a ton of seemingly random quests almost all of which are fetch quests or “kill ten rats” type combat quests. You’ll spend most of your time roaming around looking for 4 of these or 6 of those in order to complete a quest. There is no map which can lead to a decent amount of back-tracking as you search for that last Macguffin.
Combat is pretty button-mashy and not very difficult. The biggest challenge you’ll face is the camera. Ravenlok has a kind of a 50%-3D world. What I mean is you can’t move towards the screen but you can move back into the screen. The trouble is that the camera only moves about 180 degrees. The net effect is that if you go too ‘deep’ into a scene during combat, enemies will end up ‘behind’ the camera and you can’t spin it around enough to see them.
This would be a game-crippling flaw if the combat wasn’t super easy to begin with.
I have to say, I didn’t like Ravenlok very much but I don’t think I’m the intended audience. It’d probably be a great game for a parent to play with a child, or just for a child to play on their own. Oh and if you need some Achievements you’ll get a bunch; in the hour or two I played I unlocked 13.
Other folks say the game is only 4 or 5 hours long, so it’s not a huge commitment. I’m not sure if I’ll go back. I was searching for 9 of something and had found 6 and was getting really tired of roaming around searching for the last 3 since it was about the 10th time I’d had to roam around searching for stuff. Basically I just found it all kind of boring.
Worth noting that on the Xbox it’s got an average of 4 out of 5 stars, though the PC version doesn’t fare as well. Opencritic has it at a 68/100 rating. If you’re not on Game Pass and want to give it a try on PC, you’ll have to go to the Epic Store or the Windows Store. It doesn’t seem to be on Steam, at least not yet.