22/03/2019

๐Ÿ” Review: Rainswept "A Breezy, Narrative Driven Adventure" ๐Ÿ”Ž @Rainswept_Game #GameDev #IndieGame

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Game Title: Rainswept
Platform Reviewed: PC (Steam)
Rating: Ice Cool
I’ve always enjoyed playing a solid graphic adventure that’s driven by narrative and doesn’t rely on pop culture references or obscure puzzles to move forwards, and Rainswept is just that. By no means perfect, it does, however, take an approach that, whilst dipping into the sentimental, talks about heavy topics with a light touch.
Playing the part of Detective Stone as he arrives in the supposedly idyllic, small town of Pineview to investigate what initially appears to be a murder-suicide, Rainswept is presented in a stylised 2D fashion with sparse (by design) ‘point and click’ mechanics which, in their stripped-back way, match the visuals well. The local Sheriff is keen to get the case wrapped up as quickly as possible due to an approaching town festival and it seems only Detective Stone himself believes there to be more to the case than meets the eye although he is dealing with his own personal demons and boy, that man can smoke.
In the graphic adventure genre, the writing is paramount, especially in a case such as this whereby so much time is spent in dialogue. Rainswept is set in America in 1996 and people will speak accordingly (including the teenagers, unfortunately) and whilst dialogue is rarely dense, it fits the breezy tone of the game. Puzzles are never overly challenging, existing mainly, it seems to extend the narrative and insert some gameplay into the proceedings and whilst the inventory-based puzzles are very easy, they do fit the game well as the drive here is not a grinding challenge but instead feeling apart of the game world and understanding people and motives.
That’s not to say there aren’t issues with the game. Whilst the dialogue is text only leaving looped music cues and gentle piano / ambient sounds to fill the gaps, some of the external sounds, bird sounds especially got to me at times. The game also isn’t as smooth as it probably could be with some slight stuttering in some parts that feel like they could have been avoided and the case wraps up extremely neatly at the end with a touch too much sentimentality for my personal tastes (along with a plot point that never quite resolved for me), but the pace of the game and the breeziness with which it was told kept me hooked for the duration of play (3-4 hours).

Summary
Rainswept is a neat little game that covers love, loss and the breaking down of relationships as well as small-town life and the issues that come with living in a close community.
Whilst it has its small issues, the overarching plot and gentle design more than make up for the shortcomings and adds up to a solid detective tale that doesn’t rely on shock tactics or preposterous puzzles to artificially extend the shelf life.
If you are a fan of narrative-driven adventures, don’t let this one pass you by.
Right, I’m off to buy some Silk Cut.

❄️ RATING: ICE COOL ❄️

Ratings Explained
ICE COOL (Great Game Recommended)
MELTING (Recommended with reservations, one to consider if you are a fan of the genre)
MELTED (Not A Recommended Purchase)

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