This adorable puzzler pulls you in from very beginning, giving you just enough background to beckon you on through the game in search of answers. You control both Aiden and his daughter, Lily, alternating between the two as their actions lead them in diverging, but closely paralleled stories.
Aiden’s father, Arthur, a renowned scientist and near-obsessive inventor, is missing. Aiden stumbles upon a series of clues as to his father’s whereabouts and manages to get himself transported into a parallel universe. The mischievous and headstrong Lily, after nearly burning the house down, sling-shotting herself over a wall, and decapitating a gnome, follows after her own father upon discovering his subsequent disappearance.
The graphics in The Little Acre are full of color and life and help to signify your physical location in the game. When you are in Ireland, on the farm that is home to Aiden, Lily, and Arthur, your surroundings are exactly the colors you’d expect. Green grass, blue sky, white sheep, etc. However, when you cross over into the alternate world, Clonfira, darker hues saturate the screen, giving it a creepier feeling akin to the Upside Down from Stranger Things.
Curve Digital’s puzzler is heavily story driven, which in my opinion is always a major plus and relies on characterization interspersed with plot. As you explore, you find out more about your characters. For example, you will only discover that Lily’s mother is gone if you look at the photograph in the house and the ornate stone in front of the house. You could, if you don’t spend time looking around, miss out on these little plot points, so be careful!
The sound effects and voice acting help to enhance the game, especially since the plot is, for the most part, narrated by the characters based on the things you click on. When you’re playing scenes in Clonfira involving Merr, be ready for near-constant annoyance, as his keening drawl is enough to drive anyone to contemplate chucking a controller through the TV. The musical score behind The Little Acre is subtle, but compliments the game play. It works as a relaxer of sorts, especially when you’re having difficulty with a puzzle. The puzzles in this game range from intuitively simple to frustratingly complex.
Probably the only major downfall of the game, for me, was the motion control. It was extremely sensitive and when you’re trying to do a combination move to solve a puzzle, the fact that your cursor flies around the screen at the slightest provocation can be challenging.
All in all, The Little Acre is a game worth playing. With a relatively short length, it’s a game you can play through in one sitting, or break into quick shifts. If you are a fan of a game with a strong storyline and quirky but cute graphics, don’t let this one pass you by!