She Remembered Caterpillars Review


She Remembered Caterpillars Review: She Remembered Caterpillars is a puzzle
game that follows in the footsteps of Jonathan Blow’s The Witness … by having a
vague and curious title that only barely relates to any part of the game’s
content. Oh you thought I meant the open world thing? No. In every other way the
games differ greatly, especially given that She Remembered Caterpillars just
uses a normal level select screen for its puzzles, albeit quite a beautiful one,
rather than an expansive and, in some ways excessive, open world. Ah The
Witness.. why are you the way that you are? If you want to know why the game is
called She Remembered Caterpillars – I genuinely don’t know. I’ll look it up now
and even though really I’m checking that now well before I’ve even finished
writing this review – for comedic effect I’m going to leave this bit in the
script to make it sound like I’m finding out live right as you’re watching the
video, yeah it still doesn’t make any sense. She Remembered Caterpillars is a puzzle game where you move adorable little creatures
about and try to get them all onto lilypads so they can helicopter off to
sleep.. or something, that’s what it looks like. From a more mechanical standpoint
you just need to fill each one of these pads with a creature and the level is
complete. So what’s the puzzle? Well the creatures can be one of three different
colours and this causes problems because in this twisting, gloomy, subterranean
‘phantasmagoria’ – their word not mine – where you can go and what you can do are
decided by your colour. Oh dear. A red creature can walk across a red bridge
when a blue creature can’t, but the blue creature can walk across a separate blue
path. Separate but equal, forget I said that phrase. Caterpillar bridges show which colour
can cross whereas gates like this block creatures the same colour as them. It’s
pretty simple but what gives the game depth is how the creatures can combine
and uncombined to form new colours. A blue and yellow can merge to form a green and
now they can get across a blue bridge because the creature contains blue, but
it can’t get through a blue gate for the same reason. Merging is absolutely
necessary to complete the levels by shipping creatures around to platforms
that they couldn’t reach on their own. If you merge a red and blue the combined
creature can walk across a red, blue, or purple bridge and then uncombine
on the other side, but a creature containing any yellow wouldn’t be able
to pass through a yellow gate. Or in a more complicated situation
a purple creature wouldn’t be able to pass through an orange gate because the
red component of the red-blue purple clashes with the red component of the
red-yellow orange. On top of the bridges and the gates you’ve also got snail
bridges which only link up when creatures are sat on all the necessary
buttons, some levels also contain color-changing devices that remind me of
the mechanic from Star Wars: Pit Droids (which hopefully at least someone
watching will have played so the reference isn’t wasted) and as you
progress through the game more concepts are added in. She Remembered Caterpillars
is split into eight acts of ~5 levels each and every act introduces either a
new mechanic or a new color of creature to work with. I have to say I loved these
puzzles. I thought they were great concepts, not original by any means but
very well executed, and both the difficulty and method of solving were
perfect. I’ve mentioned a few times how I think that puzzle video games should
force you to solve in some part by doing and that’s absolutely the case with
She Remembered Caterpillars. When a level starts the first thing you’ll do is
start combining creatures and sending them across bridges and just getting a
basic idea of all the different permutations of positions that you’ll
have in this level. Then you start to think a little more deeply – you look at
some of the lilypads and realise “okay to get two creatures into here I’m gonna
need to get a red and a blue onto this platform” and now you’ve got a more
specific goal to try to reach. So if you’re anything like me levels involve
this wonderful back and forth of moving the creatures around and seeing where
they can go, and then working on the level backwards to see where certain
colours are going to need to be. It’s that mix of satisfying puzzle solving with
wonderfully tactile gameplay that makes a good puzzle game, and of course that
tactility here has helped massively by the gorgeous art for the game’s levels
and the adorable animations. I also mentioned that I thought the game’s
difficulty was exceptional and that’s in part because it makes great use of the
‘roller coaster’ gameplay curve that most video games should strive for. In a
first-person shooter this curve would represent tension; it would rise as a
section becomes more tense and action focused and then drop down after you
defeat a tricky boss and the game gives you some time to rest
recuperate. In a puzzle game however this curve should represent difficulty and
She Remembered Caterpillars nails that. At the start of an act the levels can
be quite simple because the game is teaching you a new mechanic, but as the
act progresses they become more difficult and ramp up into some
genuinely tough challenges that can take a good while to solve. What I was most
impressed by is how, even when a level was proving incredibly tricky and
despite multiple occasions where I would take my hands away from my laptop and
confidently assert “nope, no way, this one just can’t be done” – I was never actually
frustrated by a level and something about the design meant I was always
confident that I would work out a solution if I just spent a bit longer
thinking about it. Now I’m a huge fan of puzzles, but I’ll freely admit that sometimes I just give up if I’m not getting anywhere with a challenge after
an extended period of time – but that never happened here even on the levels that
took the longest to solve. Just out of curiosity I timed myself solving some of
the later levels of the game and you can see from this what I meant before about
the ‘roller coaster’ curve with the length of time taken to solve a puzzle climbing
from 2 minutes, up to 5 minutes, all the way up to 20 minutes on a single level,
but then drops back down to just over 5 minutes at the start of the next act. The
roller-coaster also finishes on a real high in the last level of She Remembered
Caterpillars that ties together every previous mechanic from the game with one
additional twist in such a great way that it felt more like an endgame boss
battle than it did the last level of a puzzle game. Technically there is a story
that connects the levels together which is where the caterpillar thing comes in,
but it doesn’t really make all that much sense. It’s vaguely about a father and a
daughter, I think, but it’s also told through very, very short snippets of a
conversation without a lot of detail and these tiny snippets only appear between
each level – and sometimes when the levels are long enough, once you get to the next
line of text you won’t even remember what the last one said. The story does
somewhat fit the game’s darker visual aesthetic but doesn’t thematically tie
in with the puzzles and so it doesn’t really matter whether you remember it or
not. But while the story may not matter, and the title is a bit weird – everything
else about She Remembered Caterpillars is building a highly
satisfying puzzle game and one that I will happily recommend. And because I
forgot to add this in somewhere better in the script the game has a free demo
on Steam if you want to go and check it out thanks for watching and I’ll see you
in the next one. And to win your team the game: What a
small insects of the order Lepidoptera undergo the biological process of
metamorphosis and become butterflies as their adult form? *struggling* oh yes I know it.. it’s erm.. the
things that errr.. you know the name of them issss Pass.

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