While games steeped in nostalgia and the like are the norm these days, that doesn’t mean there’s no place for these kinds of titles. On the contrary, sometimes, these little titles can blow us away in a way that their AAA siblings couldn’t. Is Evan’s Remains one of these games? Join us as we venture to solve the mystery behind the 2-D puzzle platformer, Evan’s Remains, in our Evan’s Remains review.
Rinse and Repeat
At its heart, Evan’s Remains is a 2D side scroller puzzle-platformer, one that is by no means a bad one. In fact, it’s actually really clever in terms of their set-ups. While they may begin as super easy and basic, their designs eventually become more complicated as they force users to think outside of the box. Countless times I found myself needing to take a short moment to actually think of the solution, a telling sign the puzzles are doing exactly what they are intended to do. Players looking for some mind-twisting challenges will be happy to know that Evan’s remains can supply just that. My only real complaint with Evan’s Remains when it comes to gameplay is that this style isn’t entirely suited for it. As enjoyable as it was, Evan’s Remains probably could have gotten away with just about any other type of gameplay. In fact, the game seems self-aware of this as the characters state that the puzzles are completely optional. Still, I had my fun with them and don’t mind the distraction that they supplied.
A Story That Hits Hard
If you would have told me that there was a 2D platformer puzzle game releasing this year that would make me want to cry, I would have probably laughed in your face. Going into Evan’s Remains, I had little to no expectations for the story as I simply saw the game as just another indie game. A very bad perception to say the least on my part, one that I could not have been any more wrong about. It’s hard not writing about how the story goes in Evan’s Remains without spoiling it, but from a presentation viewpoint, it hits all the right strings when it comes to being emotional.
Pacing is perfect, as every step you take, more and more mysteries begin to unravel before your very own eyes. The world of Evan’s Remains is covered in such a shroud of mysteries, yet it’s the characters that end up taking the spotlight away as they have more to do with the world than we are lead to believe. Once those credits started rolling, I was both angry and sad with the conclusion as I couldn’t believe what I had just experienced. A sign of hopelessness if one could describe the flood of emotions. Halfway into 2020, and I don’t think I’ve had the honor to experience a story this heart-wrenching. I took a few days to think about the journey, even if it was a short 3-4 hours long. This is one experience that is going to stick with me for a very long time, and one we hope to see continue with the developer himself.
The visual direction is also a welcome treat, as while we’ve had our fair shares of pixel art titles over the years, Evan’s Remains bolsters some of the best environments to make use of it. Every scenery offered gorgeous coloring and was accompanied by beautiful music. Combine this with the excellent narrative and you got yourself a perfect combination of balance. While it’s hard to express how a character may be feeling in their little pixelated faces, the environment conveys all that in such a charming way, one can’t help but fall in love with how it looks. I also love the water effect. I know many people like pointing out how amazing water can be in games shooting for realism, but for a pixel art style game, I was pleasantly surprised by the reflections.
What Does Remain?
Overall, Evan’s Remains is an excellent afternoon sitting that I recommend to everyone. It may only be a few hours long, but the story told will forever be memorable in those who experience it. Plus, it’s only selling for a measly $7, making it well worth the price. My only hope is that the developer, maitan69, and publishers, Whitethorn Digital continue more with this series as there are a lot of unanswered questions.
- A story well worth experiencing
- Clever puzzles
- Beautiful art direction
- Too short, but the price reflects well on that
- Despite being fun, puzzles could have fit better narratively in the story I feel
A review copy of Evan’s Remains was provided by the publisher. Reviewed on PS4. You can read SP1st’s review and scoring policy right here.