Ravenlok is a charming action-adventure title developed and published by Cococucumber. In it, you'll take on the role of a little girl who passes through an old mirror in the barn, and ends up in a magical land that very much honours Alice in Wonderland.
The game takes no time in throwing you into action — as soon as your character arrives in the new land, she gets told that she's the prophesied Ravenlok — a heroine who is destined to free everyone from the grips of the tyrannical evil queen. Without a single moment of hesitation, the young girl springs into action and rises to the cause. But before she can go head-to-head with the queen, she'll first need to find three keys spread across the lands to open the lock on the castle's door.
In total, there are three worlds that you have to explore — the Tea Party, the Clock Tower, and the Greenhouse; each one has breathtaking backdrops, magical worlds, and collectibles to snag. Ravenlok is one of the most visually impressive titles I've played, as the developer did a wonderful job at creating stunning areas that I personally feel trumped anything seen in Alice in Wonderland.
Aside from getting a lot of eye candy and collectibles through the three different main zones, you'll also come across a variety of quests — from helping the magical deer deal with the pests plaguing their home to collecting random trinkets for a dragon blocking your way; the game does a good job at keeps you entertained with tiny tasks. Unfortunately, it felt like the last bit — namely, right after the labyrinth — everything was a bit quick! No more interesting quests or puzzles, just a very A to B and you're done type of deal.
Whilst it was a bit disappointing to see the last bit of the game feel rushed, I'm not completely unhappy about it. I clocked in at about six hours, and although that's a bit short, I genuinely think the game benefitted from not dragging it out. The straightforward puzzles, easy combat, and simple story were all entertaining and charming enough for a short title... but it all might have become too boring had it gone up to 10+ hours. I just wish the quests had been a bit more spread out throughout the zones, as I really wanted to spend some more time in some of the areas. As my wife likes to say, that’s a good complaint to have.
As for the combat, although the abilities were quite fun and the bosses had some spectacular designs, it was a bit clunky at times. One of the smartest decisions the developer made was to lock the screen looking forward; although this doesn’t let you enjoy a fully 3D world, it helps make what you can see the centre of it all, and gives the developer more control of how everything looks. Whilst this is a bit uncomfortable during battle, I can only assume it was one of the reasons why the setting was so beautiful: intelligent budgeting. That being said, considering each boss would take you to an arena, it might've been a good idea to unlock the camera in those battlefields to make the fights more fluent.
And lastly, I wanted to touch on the design of the game (again; I know. I'm just completely smitten). Aside from the colourful voxel graphics and magical areas, the game has some pretty decent music — it's gloomy and dark with a touch of magic; much like what you might expect from a Tim Burton film. And while the sound effects were quite repetitive, to me, it personally didn't get in the way enough to disturb my experience.
Ravenlok is a short and gorgeous title, and if you go in knowing it'll be easy and simple, I don't see why anyone should have a problem with it. Despite the lack of in-depth story, the characters were absolutely adorable and the quests fun enough: I truly enjoyed my time with this charming new title.
Ravenlok (Reviewed on Windows)
This game is good, with a few negatives.
At just about five hours long, Ravenlok is an enjoyable title with simple gameplay design but stunning setting and voxel graphics.