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  • John Bush

Game Review #291: The Mystery of Woolley Mountain (Nintendo Switch)

Reviewer: A.J. Splutter Developer: Lightfoot Brothers Publisher: Huey Games Category: Point & Click / Adventure Release Date: 4.10.19 Price (at time of review): $12.99

Buy The Mystery of Woolley Mountain from the Nintendo Switch eShop here.

The 90’s of the Future The Mystery of Woolley Mountain is a point and click adventure game that follows the escapades of time travelling, musician, science heavy explorers trying to save their friend and rescue the children that were captured by an evil witch up on Woolley Mountain featuring some extremely British humor. The game was originally funded on Kickstarter and made primarily by the one man team of James Lightfoot - but you wouldn’t know that from playing the game. With the same retro revival that Shovel Knight hit shores with, The Mystery of Woolley Mountain revives classic point and clicks for the new age, and really breathes life into a seemingly long lost genre.

It’s a game of patience, problem solving, and trial and error - as you combine items in wacky ways to form new items to trial and error your way around while speaking to people multiple times after finding out new information to see if they have any more to say on newly found out topics. I can’t speak too much about the plot of the game without revealing any major spoilers, it’s just that much of a gem, but I will say that the foreshadowing of future events is set up very well, with me guessing the conclusion all the way through playing and only having it click in and hit me hard right at the end before the big reveal. Well done, good chap.

Controlling Your Way to the Mountain The possible downfall for the project is in the genre and individuals’ experiences with the genre. I, personally, grew up playing point and click adventure games and this project hit me hard in the nostalgia bone as I blissfully solved all I could around the various locales you visit throughout the game. The Mystery of Woolley Mountain is set up like any other point and click adventure and really builds its world and the rules of said world. If you aren’t used to the wacky and wild themes and puzzles, this one might be a bit tough to get through. I only felt stuck on one puzzle in the game, due to me clearing out all objectives in a room, and ignoring the ‘prize item’ I needed to progress - then clearing out every other objective, getting stuck and having to resort to the official walkthrough - - but that’s in the charm of point and click adventures. Woolley Mountain’s difficulty isn’t massive, as characters will frequently drop hints in dialogue if you listen carefully enough, but even doing so, you’ll still need to figure out a way to find the items or do the task that they hint at.

Voice Acting, Music and Visuals The voice acting during the game was done very well, with only a few lines being very… umm… stilted, but nothing to scoff at and certainly enjoyable (giving it a very 80’s / 90’s voice acting vibe, which may not have been intended, but worked none the less). This game is one that you almost need to play with the volume all the way up and pay attention to, as a lot of the clues and world building comes from the music, sound effects, and voice acting. The visuals of the game are simply outstanding, going as far as to reference many games and other media, mainly from the UK. This hits home with me as television for me was a mix of Canadian and British, boom boom - so you bet your bottom dollar I picked up on most of what was hinted at. From the lowly Wizard Boy of the 90’s to the cult classic that most of the Western Audience will miss if they never visited that Trap Door with Berk, it was a joy to find and recognize all the little Easter eggs.

There are even mini Spectrum games featured in the story (and playable - mind you) that were made by James when he was about ten years old. This level of references far out exceeds me, but it was more than a joy to listen to some jamming music and solve mysteries with the time traveling crew.

Final Thoughts The Mystery of Woolley Mountain took me about seven hours to complete all three acts, with roughly two of those hours being stuck on one puzzle (mentioned above) due to my own stupidity. All of the other puzzles might have taken some brain juice to fully understand, but once it clicked, it was a joy to properly solve the conundrum presented. As with most point and click games, there are a few items that go unused and are just there to boggle your mind as you play, but nothing really hurt my progression other than trying the random items over and over again when I thought I was missing something. Though there were a few graphical bugs, and even some bugs that made me exit a room to reset it when items didn’t function as they should, it was nothing that deterred me - in fact, it only made me march on faster.

I highly recommend that you visit the official website for the unique chance to own the spectrum games featured in the game, physical vinyl records, and other goodies that fans of this game would only dream of. There’s not much new in a replay of this game, but it’s more than worth it to experience it the first time through. The production behind this Kickstarter is second to none and I have nothing but extreme excitement for anything else the Lightfoot Brothers come up with. Until our next adventure…

Score: 9.5/10

Buy The Mystery of Woolley Mountain from the Nintendo Switch eShop here.

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