Awakening 6: The Redleaf Forest
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Options include Full-screen, Custom Cursor, Achievements Notifications and separate sliders for Sound, Music and Voiceovers. Choice of Relaxed, Normal or Dreadmyre! mode.
NOTE: If you have black bars at the top and bottom of the screen when you enter, switch your desktop resolution to 1024x768, and it will run full-screen.Story
Queen Sofia's quest to save her parents is finally nearing its end. Join her on her search for the centaur-blacksmith who can help her forge the only weapon that can defeat Dreadmyre - The Blade of Courage. It's not only her parents' lives that hang in the balance, but creatures across many kingdoms. This is her most dangerous journey, as she is faced with fierce creatures and Dreadmyre himself!
We have NO Journal, but we have a "companion" on the left side of the screen that we can click on for a task list (of sorts), and of course our friends Ran the Owl (our HINT button) and our helpful pocket dragon are ever by our side.Gameplay
For those who are sensitive: There is one spider that we have to interact with.
Be on the lookout for Collectible Flower Stones
as you play. There's at least one at each location, but there are also "Golden Collectibles", which are flower stones that kind of wink in and out of sight. Hard to spot, and you never know when a scene will have that 2nd stone on it! These stones are used to upgrade your garden (see the bonus content area below for more info.)
This installment in the Awakening
series feels different than the previous games, as the formula I've become accustomed to has been changed. It seems more adventure-heavy, with less of an emphasis on the mini-games. The variety of HOS types is still there, but I'll come back to that in a bit.
is easier-to-read, interactive, and can show us where active areas are. We can insta-transport, but it does NOT show you where you might have missed a collectible!
Instead of being done in a way that closes off locations when you finish a chapter, these places stay "open" throughout the game (very helpful for finding flower stones!) Not only that, but we will end up coming back to an area and finding new locations there. It's all tied together very nicely by the story, and did not interrupt the flow of the game... In fact, I found it more enjoyable this way!
during the adventure portion will do one of three things: Point you towards an area on the screen, give you a directional arrow, or give you a popup telling you which location to go to, along with a "Take me there" button (insta-transport). Usually after you transport, the hint will show you where on the screen you need to look (instead of having to use another hint.)
The Hidden Object Scenes
are widely-varied by type. We have our standard find-by-list scenes, but most of the time they're heavily-interactive. You may need to flip switches to see different parts of the scene, solve puzzles, zoom in, etc. There are also scenes where you find-by-silhouette (and these can also be highly-interactive), placing items back in the scene, finding where pictured squares are on the scene, finding multiples of items and more!Sights and Sounds
As you might imagine from the name Redleaf Forest
, the game is gorgeously rife with rich colors, and yet the devs did a beautiful job of making sure that every location looks different (NOT the same color palette for every single location - a pet peeve of mine.)
The voices are almost all very well done, the music is just lovely and the sound effects fit perfectly with what we're doing.CE Content
- Integrated Strategy Guide
- 45 Collectible Flower Stones and "Golden Collectibles"
- 18 Achievements
- Bonus Chapter
- 19 Rewatchable Cutscenes
- 12 Wallpapers
- 8 Concept Art
- 12 Music Tracks (no option to save)
- Garden mini-games
The garden has multiple areas. Zoom in to the giant flower
to use the collectible flower stones and unlock seed pods. One you've unlocked a pod, you'll need to do a match-3-puzzle (remove all of the pieces) to obtain a special seed. There are 15 seed pods which you can unlock.NOTE:
Once you finish the game, you cannot go back in to collect flower stones that you might have missed. Same with the bonus chapter. You have to start a new profile if you want to play again.Seed pods
are used in the seed area to create different varieties of laughing lilies. Combine two seeds and then water to see if you've found a successful combo. Each variety you discover will be displayed in your garden-totem area.
The third zoom-in area of your garden is the treasure chest
, where you have 14 of the "Convert all the seeds into the same type" mini-games. Each one is a bit harder than the last, so it's not just the same thing over and over again.Bonus Chapter
The bonus takes place at least four years after the main game ends, as we take on the role of nanny to the kingdom's young and precocious princess.
You can tell that whomever worked on this chapter has children, as little Andreia's voice, dialogue and mannerisms are absolutely perfect. It was a delightful way to wrap up this final story that has covered these past six games.
There are 10 all-new locations in the bonus, and they packed a whole lot of game into those places - It took me nearly two hours to complete!
Be sure to check out any books you come across! One of them gives you the fate of varying creatures/people whom you interacted with across these past 6 games! It was very nice to have that extra bit of unexpected closure!Verdict
This is the final game with Sophia as the protagonist, and the darkest of the series. This is not to say that the game dives into dark & eerie territory, but you can certainly feel the danger that you are up against. I love that the bonus chapter takes us years into the future, and gives us such delightful closure to Sophia's story. Highly recommended!