Game Review #098: Clouds & Sheep 2 (Nintendo Switch)
Reviewer: John B.
Developed By: Handy Games Published By: Handy Games Category: Simulation, Adventure Release Date: 12.21.18
Price (at time of review): $9.99
Buy Clouds & Sheep 2 on the Nintendo eShop here.
Have you ever looked at a shepherd and thought to yourself “that should be me? But not, like, full time? Just, like, casually, for maybe an hour or two at a time, tops? And not with so many sheep?” Well, your strangely limited fantasy has come true, thanks to Handy Games and their latest release, Clouds and Sheep 2 for the Nintendo Switch. It’s a casual sheep herding simulator. It’s not a game of deep strategy or resource management, but it’s a nice, relaxing experience that provides a surprising amount of entertainment.
Herd Some Sheep
Clouds & Sheep 2 opens with a sheep named Buddy teaching you the basics of how to herd him. You can use either a controller or the Switch’s touchscreen to interact with the pasture; moving sheep, objects in the meadow, and clouds. You can play with your sheep by tossing them in the air or pulling their tail to send them rolling away. You can lead them to plants or pools of water to eat and drink by dragging them. Your sheep will occasionally tell you what they want with a small thought bubble over your head; leading them to what they want will make them happy. So will playing with them; happy sheep will produce a star every once in a while. Stars are the basic currency of the game; but we’ll get to that later. Eating flowers will put your sheep in the mood for love; when a male and female sheep are in the mood, you can drag them together and they will produce a heart, which you can use to make a cute little lamb.
Herd Some Clouds
Turns out shepherds can control the weather! In Clouds & Sheep 2 you do that by clicking and dragging clouds together. Regular clouds are just small, white puffs. If you gather enough together, they turn into a grey rain cloud. Holding the button or your finger down on a rain cloud causes it to start raining. If it rains enough in one spot you can create a small or large puddle. Small puddles will turn into patches of grass you can feed your sheep, while large puddles allow your sheep to get a drink of water. If you continue to add clouds to a rain cloud, you get a thunder cloud. You can use thunder to destroy any poisonous mushrooms that pop up. You can break clouds up as well, to ensure your sheep aren’t hit by any stray lightning bolts. Once your sheep have fallen in love and produced a star, you can drag that star onto any cloud and that is, apparently, where baby sheep come from. This differs somewhat from what I was told about the process, but… well. I think this game would know.
Herd Some Resources
Clouds & Sheep 2 has four different kinds of resources that can be used to decorate your sheep, purchase plants and decorations for your meadow, and expand your territory to accommodate a bigger herd. When your sheep are happy, they will automatically generate stars for you. You can plant trees and flowers, which will sparkle after a while. Once these plants get sparkly, you can harvest wood and flower petals from them. Finally, since you are raising sheep, you can sheer them to collect wool. You can use the wool to craft items for your pasture and outfits for your sheep.
Herd Some Quests
Your sheep will occasionally assign you activities, which you can complete for fabulous prizes. The fabulous prizes are more resources. Anyway, they will usually ask you to do something simple (because nothing in Sheep & Clouds 2 is complicated), like roll a certain number of sheep or collect a certain amount of resources. Sometimes it will be to build a certain decoration or give them a fun hat. Either way, when you complete a quest, you gain a level. New levels unlock newer, more expensive items to be crafted, as well as new themes for your meadow. You can raise sheep in a winter wonderland or a pirate’s cove if you want, after leveling up a ways.
Herd Some Graphics and Sound
Clouds & Sheep 2 is a good-looking game for what it is. No one’s going to mistake it for the latest AAA release from Square-Enix or EA, but it’s got a pretty presentable cartoonish style. The backgrounds look hand-drawn, with a great deal of detail. The sheep are decently animated and expressive; it’s easy to tell which ones are unhappy and therefore in need of attention by the expressions on their faces. The music is OK; it’s just really light background music that doesn’t make a real impact. Still, it’s pleasant enough. Your sheep make baa-baa noises according to their mood, too, which is a fun touch; it gives the sheep, which are generally just generic-looking white fluff balls unless you give them some accessories, some personality.
Herd Some Conclusions
Clouds & Sheep 2 is not a game for hardcore strategy fans. It’s a casual game about taking care of some cartoon sheep. Like the two items in its title, this game is just soft and fluffy, but it is pretty fun for a little while. I couldn’t just sit and play for hours on end or anything, but it’s an amusing way to spend half an hour and relax after playing something more challenging that makes you want to throw your Switch against the wall.
Buy Clouds & Sheep 2 on the Nintendo eShop here.
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