Garden Story Review: Garden Story is an independent action role-playing game (ARPG) created by Picogram and released by Rose City Games on August 11, 2021, for PC and Nintendo Switch. Follow Concord, the Grove’s youngest grape, as they collaborate with the other residents to rebuild their home after the Rot overran it.
Garden Story Review
With the exception of fantasy violence, Garden Story is suitable for viewers aged 10 and up. Screen shaking and flash effects are employed visually, although as of version 1.0.8, only the former can be toggled on or off.
The game (versions 1.0.6 through 1.0.7) was played on a computer using keyboard controls for this review. Although the playthrough took me around 40 hours, the expected duration is 15 to 20 hours. But was the experience with our grape heroine bitter or sweet?
Guardian After Gardener
The protagonist of Garden Story rises to the great task of saving the day in a linear, condensed, and conventionally plotted main story. Concord is initially hired as a gardener to take care of the vine in the kindergarten, but she is soon promoted to Guardian to assist with the catastrophic situation that the aggressive Rot is causing around the Grove.
Their trip begins in Spring Hamlet, and the primary questline will lead them in chronological order through Summer Bar, Autumn Town, and Winter Glade. Concord must first defeat the town’s boss opponent before they can go to the next town. As a result, the action plays a big part in this game. Garden Story contains a “perish prevention” mode where Concord’s health points (HP) cannot drop below one, even if the main boss encounters cannot be bypassed and the difficulty level is fixed.
Aside from boss fights, every town that has been affected by the Rot has various locations where regular opponents can be found. Running or rolling through them allows you to avoid engaging them in combat, but there are occasions when doing so is important because they can stop Concord from working. For instance, if an enemy attack nearby Concord as they are taking a resource out of the sea, Concord will lose control of the line and have to recast it. So, despite the fact that Garden Story offers a variety of non-combat activities, one shouldn’t anticipate that combat will receive little attention. In light of this, let’s take a closer look at Concord’s journey.
Journey At Your Own Pace
In the Grove, a day is divided into five distinct periods: the morning, the day, the evening, the night, and after dark. A few places and businesses only operate at certain hours of the day, and a few characters can only be encountered or engaged with during certain hours as well. In addition to being more aggressive than enemies seen during the day, nighttime enemies are more active.
With the exception of these few time-sensitive groups, there is little need to worry about the time of day because Concord can carry on with its operations well into the night. They won’t pass out from tiredness and have to rest until the next morning when Concord dies in a battle. So long as they are content and ready to call it a day, players can take their time foraging or exploring the town before making their way back to Concord’s house to sleep. The lack of background music, however, makes it feel chilly and dismal whenever Concord wanders around the empty town at night. This serves as a deterrent for Concord from staying up late into the night.
Another unique feature of Garden Story’s time system is how time moves continuously in the background but won’t change, for example, from the end of the morning to the beginning of the evening unless Concord moves from one map area to another. This style initially took some getting used to because it gives the impression that time is passing slowly.
However, I begin to value it once I see how I can utilize it to my advantage. I may reach a town area in the late afternoon without worrying that the shops there would soon close for the night thanks to this tiny time stopper. I can take my time to do several things around the same neighborhood before finally strolling into the shops rather than entering right away.
Puzzles In Garden Story
Despite the majority of them having similar base designs for their appearances, the rot opponents in Garden Story have distinctive movement and attack routines that make them memorable. Players would likely find the confrontations easier to handle if they took a few seconds to carefully observe the enemy before attacking them. After all, some adversaries must take a specific kind of damage before they become susceptible to all other kinds of harm.
Because of their agility in pursuing Concord and their propensity to erupt into a hail of projectiles as soon as they get close, I think the Acorns to be the most difficult of the typical Rot opponents to combat. Glomps crash into Concord and cause quite a bit of damage, however, if they are encountered in open areas with lots of room, it would be simple to escape their constrained movement range.
Garden Story is a fantastic option for people searching for a laid-back game because it has components and features that let players really take their time playing. It has been a beautiful pleasant voyage overall, despite the fact that some fundamental chores might become monotonous owing to the system design, and gardening and constructing could have been more enjoyable or at least more purposeful. This game has a lot to enjoy, from the uplifting music to the charming pixel imagery and endearing characters.