Its very rare for a point and click story-based game to really grab my attention. It’s not my favorite genre, but I’m always willing to keep my mind open and try new things. While Peregrin has some issues in the gameplay department, its story was enough to keep me intrigued throughout the entire game.
In Peregrin you play as Abi who is on a journey across The Divide, a wasteland filled with dangers and monsters. Mysterious monoliths and strange artifacts await Abi there, revealing the secrets of their fallen lands. The story unfolds for the player through the environment, observing the wasteland and what used to be there. Interacting with certain level areas will prompt a description by the narrator who also explains Abi’s thoughts and feelings throughout the game. This style of story telling is actually really well done and slowly drips to you, keeping you intrigued and wanting to learn more in every new area.
But as I said before the gameplay is really my only issue with the game itself and it’s not particularly that there is anything wrong or broken about it. It’s simply that the gameplay and puzzles are easy and repetitive, making certain parts . . . boring. Abi has magical abilities that allows her to control animals and even the hostile guardians found in this game. From the beginning puzzle you’re are given all three animals you can control and what their abilities are to help proceed through puzzles. This means every puzzle is solved with using these three animals for the entire game. Unsurprisingly, this becomes repetitive and predictable pretty quickly. Another problem that’s irritating at times is that the camera is fixed for each section of the level and it loads you into the next area. So even if you see an animal at the edge of the screen, you can’t take control of it unless you move to that section, take control, and then walk the animal back.
The combat is also simple. Once you step inside the combat zone it turns into a turn based attack system. All fights will have you take control of whatever enemy is the best choice to take out the rest first and will always end with Abi striking the final blow on the creature she used to kill the rest. There’s a decent amount of enemy design like the normal grunt, long range, big brutes, and magic enemies that create shields. Even with that, though, the variety and the solutions are almost always the same and predictable.
I really enjoyed the visuals in Peregrin, however. It has a very nice looking hand-painted look. On the edges of ledges or the shoreline you can see individual paint stroke marks that set it apart from your average game. Between the normal levels, there will be times where the camera will zoom out, offering a wide vista of a monolith and it can be breathtaking. The sound design is simple, largely because it goes for a solemn feeling as you’re exploring this wasteland and uncovering the story of what happened to the other humans. It isn’t anything that stands out, but it works just fine for the overtone of the game.
Peregrin is a great story-focused point and click adventure that just falls short in the gameplay department. If it could have changed up the animals or added in a couple more for a wider range of possible puzzle solutions I believe it could have been a good puzzle game as well. But for what it is now the puzzles and combat are just slight slow downs to get to the real meat of the game that comes in its story.
A copy of Peregrin was provided by the developer
Peregrin is available now on Steam