Wednesday, 18 September 2019 04:31

Quench Review

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Edited by: Amanda Lillie

Quench, developed and published by Axon Interactive Inc., is a story-driven puzzle game set within the animal world. You play as Shepherd, a white bird born of the great Elder Tree, and are tasked with helping a herd of various animals on their dangerous pilgrimage to deliver much-needed offerings to the Elder Tree. 


As a child of the great Elder Tree, you are able to harness the powers of nature (Wind, Rain, Quake, and Lightning) in limited quantities, which is where the puzzle factor comes in. As you guide your herd of animals across the map, you’ll have to use your powers to clear obstacles for them. The trick is finding enough power resources, which you can get from revitalizing groves, and using them in the right order so that you can successfully get your animals from point A to point B without dying. 

You’ll have to keep the vicious smoke beasts at bay, which can be achieved by prodding them in another direction with Wind. In order to shape the dangerous landscape to be more accommodating, you can also grow grass for the animals to graze on by using your Rain ability. These types of obstacles are the center stage in most of the levels and although similar tasks will come up, each of the levels manage to feel unique. There is also a decent amount of variety in the different types of landscapes and animals overall. 


In terms of puzzle solving, it can be fairly difficult to figure out the number of powers you’ll need ahead of time, as there are multiple factors at play that you might or might not have to account for. It’s more likely that you’ll beat the puzzles on a trial-and-error basis, rather than using a planned-out tactic. That said, the puzzles have a nice variation in difficulty level, with some being a walk in the park and others requiring a more intense focus. While there are more challenging levels, the puzzles never feel impossible to beat, which creates a nice balance and keeps the gameplay from being too frustrating.

The downside is that there is no replay value to the levels or puzzles. Regardless of how you solve a puzzle or how many resources you use, you progress the same way each time, negating any incentive to replay the level or try a second tactic. The game itself is also rather short; it only took me around six hours to fully complete it. With no replay value and six hours of total play time, the current price tag feels pretty steep for what is being offered. 


For most of the levels, you’ll be flying over the animals with an overhead view that can pan over the map using the arrow keys. This works fairly well in certain places, but can be frustrating in others. Since there is no way to adjust the camera’s depth, it can feel way too low at certain points and can make looking around the map for groves feel more tedious than necessary. I also experienced moments of lag throughout my gameplay, which could make parts of the levels drag on slightly.


As you work to complete puzzles, you’ll also be progressing through the story of the herd and their goal to reach the Elder Tree and revive the lost parts of their habitat. There’s betrayal, loss, friendship, forgiveness, and perseverance throughout, all of which are presented in short cinematic scenes at the end of every few levels. The cinematics are a pleasant way to expand on the narrative, however, the story itself isn’t as compelling as it could be. The dialogue is just brief enough to give you a sense of each of the characters, but not much else beyond that. While the story is visually pleasing and fairly decent overall, there doesn’t seem to be enough of it to really give the title depth.


The Verdict: Good

Though the story can feel a little lacking and the gameplay is rather short for the asking price, Quench does a great job at creating challenging puzzles and unique levels while also being quite visually pleasing. If you’re a fan of puzzle games or think the story sounds interesting, you’ll likely enjoy the title –– but maybe wait for it to go on sale.

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Jade Swann

Jade Swann is an avid video game player and fiction writer. She loves getting lost in open-world RPG’s, making tough choices in story-driven games, and is a big fan of the horror genre. Some of her favorite games include Fallout 3, Fallout 4, Skyrim, Planet Coaster, and The Sims 4. When not immersed in the world of video games, she can be found reading, writing, or spending time with her very lazy Boston Terrier.


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