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Review #038: Forgotton Anne (Nintendo Switch)

Reviewed By: Chad M.

Developed By: Throughline Games

Published By: Square Enix Europe LTD

Category: Platformer, Adventure

Release Date: 11.09.2018

Download Forgotton Anne from the Nintendo eShop here.

Gone… But Forgotton Is Just The Beginning!

Forgotton Anne is a new action platformer with puzzle elements. At first glance, it came off like a point-and-click adventure game, but you soon ease into the true direction it’s meant to go. The first thing I can say about Forgotton Anne is that it was an escape from reality to an amazing and mystical world. I would compare it to the first time I saw certain movies as a child like Castle in the Sky or Kiki’s Delivery Service. They each made lasting impressions that, even as a kid, stuck with me and kept me wanting to go back to revisit those worlds over and over again. I was always latching on to certain characters and becoming engulfed in the stories. Forgotton Anne works to mimic those same experiences in the game, and for the first release from the Danish studio Throughline Games, they have set the bar very high for their next release.

In A World Unlike Our Own

Forgotton Anne takes place in a fictional world called Forgotten Lands, a magical parallel universe where lost objects that are discarded come to life. You play as Anne, an enforcer who keeps order in the Forgotten Lands. Anne sets out to extinguish a rebellion that could prevent her master, Bonku, and herself from returning to the human world. As far as any other details, I’ll remain vague and stress that you shouldn’t look up too much about the storyline. I went in blind, and it made my experience that much better, as everything unfolded naturally and was a surprise—as it should be with this fantastic story!

Gameplay and Fun Factor

The controls for the game are very simple, as you can run and jump with a special jump that is acquired a short time into the game. Anne also has a wrist gadget—and again, this is part of the storyline, so I’ll stay vague—that interacts with objects in the game, allowing you to move and control things, as well as to transport energy. At the game’s core, it has chosen storytelling over gameplay. There are elements of point-and-click adventure with light platforming, but it never really allows its gameplay to be elevated to the level of how great the story itself is. I found myself walking/running and jumping as I’d solve a puzzle from time to time, just to get to the next chunk of storyline. It took around 7 hours to complete Forgotton Anne. The journey was smooth and played out effortlessly, but sometimes the platforming was the one thing I wish could be tweaked to make it feel more cohesive.

During the game, you will find yourself interacting with characters as you play an enforcer that is like a peace keeper or police officer in this world. As you talk to the different characters, you will have to make choices on how you ask questions or say certain things. You have to stay on your toes in doing so, because at some point, your decisions will affect the game’s story and have lasting effects. Unfortunately, you don’t know the severity of the interactions until it’s too late, as it tells you that the choice will have lasting impressions afterwards, making all conversations even that much more intense.

Audio & Visuals

The music in the game was performed by the Copenhagen Philharmonic Orchestra, and it is done so well that I would’ve sworn that it was from a top tier movie or anime. With so many games nowadays having a vinyl soundtrack released—or fans calling for them to be released—it was refreshing to hear a soundtrack that demands to be owned separately, so you can enjoy it and remember your adventure with Anne. All of the characters are voiced by voice actors, and—let me just say—they are all cast well! They do a remarkable job, with a special nod given to the actress who voiced Anne. The cast does an incredible job helping you truly immerse yourself in the story.

The art in the game is hand-drawn and beautifully done, with what seems to be many inspirations. The art, at first, reminded me of the show Avatar: The Last Airbender, but couldn’t help always coming back to old school anime from the 70’s like Lupin the Third, or 80’s anime from the mighty Studio Ghibli—especially the color palate that they use, with dark tones even in bright colors. This truly is a work of art. Visually, it may be the prettiest game I’ve played on the Switch to date.

Final Thoughts

Though the puzzles aren’t mind benders, and at times, the later platforming can be a tad frustrating, this game is one that should be experienced. The story is one that will climb inside your mind and stay long after the game is over. The second it was over, I was ready to play it again. This wasn’t just a game; it was truly an experience that, once you play, you won’t soon forget. I can’t recommend Forgotton Anne enough! It is a must own!

Final Score: 9/10

Download Forgotton Anne from the Nintendo eShop here.

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*Review Code Provided By FIFTYcc

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