GAME REVIEW: WOOLFE: THE RED HOOD DIARIES / DEVELOPER: GRIN GAMESTUDIO / PUBLISHER: GRIN GAMESTUDIO / PLATFORM: PC, PLAYSTATION 4, XBOX ONE / RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW (PC), MARCH 17TH (PLAYSTATION 4, XBOX ONE)
Following their successful Kickstarter campaign in summer 2015, GRIN Studios has released their first PC title Woolfe: The Red Hood Diaries on Steam Early Access. The game tells the twisted story of Red Riding Hood, who has grown up and embarks on a journey to avenge her parents’ death with some jumping around and hitting tin soldiers and rats with an axe along the way.
The game starts with a dark monologue from a Red Riding Hood who is older than she was in the fairytale and a little less sweet. Her mother and father have been killed and the town she lives in is owned by the ruthless rich man and factory owner B.B. Woolfe, who has an army of tin soldiers at his disposal. The town gives off a very eerie feel to it, with missing posters on the walls and nothing but tin soldiers marching around the place. It makes the place feel empty and for good reason.
Throughout the game there are a few mean creatures that try to kill Red Riding Hood and, although it is loosely based on a fairytale, Red Riding Hood mentions “This is not a fairytale. There’s nothing fair about it.” And equipped with a lumberjack’s axe, you can make quick work of most enemies throughout the game. At times the combat can seem a little floaty and boring since there are not many parts of the game that are pure combat but mostly just the jumping puzzles with a couple of enemies for you to chop at.
The platforming itself is reasonably good, with some environmental puzzles that are relatively easy to solve with the camera basically showing you what to do as soon as you get there. Although, even if it didn’t there isn’t much of a puzzle in the first place; most of the time it’s just turn a valve over there a few jumps away to open to door you need to go through. But the environment and Red’s creepy rhyming make it worthwhile.
The chase scenes are good fun though, and are quite reminiscent to the chase scenes in Crash Bandicoot when you had to run from a giant boulder or a dinosaur. Although now you are running from human sized toy soldiers and the same problems from Crash Bandicoot are there too; when you can’t see where you are going it makes it very frustrating when you fail a few times and have to remember the layout of the level to succeed. The camera does also experience a few bugs at times with clipping issues and not being able to see where you are going happening sometimes. But that’s what you get with early access games.
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