Giraffe And Annika, Review
We played Giraffe and Annika, a visual project in the style of Ghibli that aims to tell us an emotional story through the eyes of a girl.
We can say that waking up on the island of Paradise may be the dream of many people seeking a unique and irreplaceable experience. A perfect destination to listen to the roar of ocean waves, watch its sunsets or experience its warm and exotic climate. Exactly if we have learned anything from video games is that the islands have that magical, mysterious essence and most importantly, a long history attached to them that makes them special. And in this case, not all islands can be as beautiful as they seem.
We analyze Giraffe and Annika, a title developed by the studio Atelier Mimina that comes in a version of PC and consoles. With an attractive visual proposal in the style of Ghibli, her story will invite us to travel to Paradise through the eyes and emotions of an innocent girl.
We are located on the leafy island of Spica where our main character Annika wakes up after she has completely lost her memory. We are not alone on the island and we soon notice that there is a mysterious boy named Giraffe who will ask for our help by finding missing elemental crystals. To obtain these crystals we have only one choice, to arm ourselves with courage and plunge into the island’s dangerous dunes. With this start we embark on a mysterious journey in an attempt to remember Annika’s past, discover Spica and learn her new powers.
Waking up in paradise
Giraffe and Annika is an action-adventure title in which we control Annika, a girl who is trying to regain her memories. And it’s not that Annika will be with Giraffe, the only ones living in the beautiful Spica. The islanders are colorful and friendly animals who will ask us for some missions to progress the story. With simple “Run, go and tell it” missions we will have to travel the island on foot to achieve our goal. Giving explicit tribute to feline animals, during the game we found references to four-legged blond friends; be it a multitude of things, unlocking an additional art called “Meowsterpiece”, and of course, the appearance of its two main characters.
When we have completed parts of the story we will be enabling new areas to visit the map at metroidvania style, along with new skills to explore the island such as jumping, swimming and sprinting. At Giraffe and Annika we find a limited and more challenging exploration where we as a path must advance the mission we are being asked to do, in making the title just be a joke to let yourself go and enjoy the aesthetics of the island at our own pace. The course of the day in the game will be essential to organizing our time and performing our deliveries, as sometimes we will have to wait until the day or night to go before we can complete missions or access certain locations. The sunset on the island will allow us access to the dunes and of course it will be where we meet our enemies. Fortunately we can always sleep in any cabin until the next morning or night to bring us directly to the action, or rather, to its restrained act.
Despite being a fantasy and adventure title, we have the disadvantage that the game will not be exactly enjoyable. Basically we get two types of enemy; the ones we run into as we progress through the final dunes and bosses. This way we can only avoid the attacks that our enemies give us since we will have no way to attack. Annika will not fight her enemies in the dunes, though she will be able to defend herself against the last bosses. We will not have weapons, magic, or combat strategy because we can only move from left to right and we will limit ourselves to blocking the attacks of the last enemies by holding one button on the rhythm of the music. With a combat style similar to the mechanics of the The guitar hero, we must follow the beat of music and not fail in our musical combinations or lose health points. Our goal will be clear, we need to shoot the final enemy to get elemental crystals, and so on. As soon as we hunt for them, we get elemental crystals and gain new memories of our character that will add more information to the plot.
While the game has some features to polish about its usability and development, we can say that its strong point is its audiovisual commitment. His physical appearance and sound are his two assets to animate the game and give him at least one chance to continue. Giraffe and Annika are a fantasy story, and for this reason they present some of the most important parts of the game as a comic. Each part of the story has its own music, and this is a pleasing and enjoyable musical strand that will give us better in its magical atmosphere. One of the features that we miss is that the audio dialogs used during the game are never at a standstill, since we always use the captions and in this case, they are not translated into Spanish.
Metroidvania style exploration system
We can say that despite good intentions in general, Giraffe and Annika fail in many ways. With a bizarre combat system, in the title we get no complicated plot, deep characters, or fierce enemies; but on the contrary, being a friendly version without much challenge. The skills we will acquire in the game are unattractive improvements that are far from what we expect to be entitled to adventure with these qualities; where swimming, sprinting and jumping are the improvements we hope to get at the beginning because it is a game based on exploration, and not in a way that can be unlocked as in this case. As for his story, we get an emotional plot to find out that he doesn’t get caught up in his story, despite having a small unexpected twist and being attached to some of his characters, being a child-focused bet. Its striking settings and characters that could inspire the classic Ni no Kuni or Ghibli studio, they succeed in getting into the relaxed and relaxed atmosphere that will allow us to visit the island at our own pace, without taking any more precautions. Over a 4 hour period, there is no doubt that Giraffe and Annika were recommended to enjoy a light, simple, action-free story with original aesthetics.
A colorful site where the action is absent
THE BEST _____
- His music and aesthetics animate his gameplay
- His story at the beginning invites us to want to know more
- The freedom to visit the island and manage our time as we wish
- The combat system and its challenges
- His narrative rhythm diminishes as we go through the story
- More complexity was expected in terms of the plot and its character
- Not translated into Spanish
- Because of its short duration it is a “half-hearted” adventure