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    Valley

    genkicoll
    genkicoll

    Posts : 8333
    Join date : 2011-12-29
    Age : 46
    Location : Pacific Northwest

    Valley Empty Valley

    Post by genkicoll on Sat Jul 01, 2017 10:21 pm

    Valley
    by Blue Isle Studios - August, 2016

    Available at:
    VOTE to get it at GOG HERE
    Humble Store
    Steam

    Valley Header

    Explore the vast and beautiful world of Valley using the power of the L.E.A.F. suit: a fierce exoskeleton that grants exceptional speed and agility along with the phenomenal ability to manipulate the life and death of all living things.

    Experience the adventure of a lifetime

    Valley is a First-Person adventure unlike any other. Hidden deep within a remote region of the Rocky Mountains, you find yourself bewildered within a secluded valley. With the power of a recently discovered L.E.A.F. suit (Leap Effortlessly though Air Functionality), run and jump your way through beautiful forests, dangerous ruins and vast environments; all the while utilizing the power to control life and death to uncover the startling secrets of the mysterious valley.

    Be forewarned, with these new-found abilities comes a daunting repercussion: the more you experience death within the valley, the more the valley will die around you.

    • Move faster, jump higher: make your way through the world of Valley using the incredible speed and agility of the L.E.A.F. suit.
    • Manipulate life and death: the L.E.A.F. suit grants its pilots the phenomenal power to both give and take life from any living thing.
    • Experience a unique twist on death: the more you die, the more the valley will die around you.
    • Enhance yourself: upgrade your suit with new abilities and strengths.
    • Explore: the world of Valley is filled with forests, wildlife, ancient ruins, charming creatures, dangerous enemies and other mysteries.

    Valley Ss_ba216c3a072bc3b638ae74eb25e5bcae2c8af021.600x338
    Valley Ss_f9a3d12ae20a971ed4bd3aca472b53b7481ecf09.600x338
    Valley Ss_f95c62571a525fa81dc840c8b9248e468dc1d41b.600x338


    _________________
    Never be a prisoner of your past.
    It was just a lesson, not a life sentence.

    Valley O9fj
    genkicoll
    genkicoll

    Posts : 8333
    Join date : 2011-12-29
    Age : 46
    Location : Pacific Northwest

    Valley Empty Re: Valley

    Post by genkicoll on Thu Jul 20, 2017 3:40 pm

    Valley (First-person Action-adventure)

    Options are many, so I'll just mention a few here.  Separate sliders for Brightness, Look Sensitivity (how fast you turn), FOV (Field of View), Master Volume and Music Volume.  'Replay Narrative Elements' is an option, you can have subtitles or no, and you can choose whether you have a Male or Female voice/character!

    We have an insta-travel MAP with nine areas that we can jump to (once unlocked), although there are points in the story where this option is not accessible.

    You can have up to four profiles at any given time, and saves are automatic, though spaced far apart.  The did-it-save-or-not issue is one I saw a lot when looking through reviews, so here is a saving tip: Pull up the menu and choose 'Travel'.  If a new area hasn't shown up on the map, the game probably hasn't saved.

    I played with a controller, but I think that keyboard & mouse would be just as good... perhaps even better!

    Sights and Sounds:

    I was immediately mesmerized by the intro music.  I just sat here with a mostly-blank title screen enjoying the instrumental for I don't know how long.  Simply beautiful! ♥️ As a matter of fact, I just turned on the soundtrack for background inspiration whilst I write this review.



    The graphics, while not the best I've ever seen, are quite lovely.  I think that I took more screenshots in Valley than in any other game I've played (except for Tomb Raider 2013 - that remains #1 on my... well... most of my lists ;D )

    Gameplay:

    Things don't make much sense in the beginning.  There is no interface, you can't jump or climb, it's just walking (or running) around looking at things.  It won't be long until you find your L.E.A.F. suit, and that's when your movement becomes truly free.  There is something so satisfying about running like a deer through the forest and jumping and soaring through the air as if you were born to fly.  It makes me smile just to think about it.

    The Basics:

    • The story progresses through a combination of notes that you find and audio tapes that play when you hit certain trigger points (You can't miss the audio files - you find them at the beginning of the game).  There are also occasional text popups as our character talks to him/herself, à la Ethan Carter... I think it's even the same font!
    • Your special suit allows you to collect energized orbs, which seem to spawn all over the valley
    • You have an ugradeable energy gauge with up to 24 cells, each of which has four power bars.  If you take a hit and lose a bar, collect an orb to replenish it
    • Your suit has the power to give life... and to take it.  The controls are pretty simple.  Walk, run, jump, give life (shoot), take life
    • Whenever you give life to something, there is a chance of getting one or more golden acorns (I will come back to those later).  You don't get acorns if you're the one who killed the animal/foliage, so keep that in mind ;)
    • The valley itself has a life gauge in the form of a tree branch with leaves to the left of OUR energy gauge (top left). Leaves fall off of the branch both when you kill things and when you die.  Lose all of the leaves, and the valley dies
    • Replenish leafs by bringing things back to life.  You lose power every time you give life, and you'll die if that power gets to zero, so find a good balance between collecting orbs and giving life

    The Price:

    I mentioned dying, and Valley handles it in a way I've never seen before.  Your suit has the power to resurrect you (so to speak, I won't spoil the mechanics here), but at a price.  Every time you die, it brings you back, but in return it takes the life of the things around you.  This is why the health of the valley suffers when you get yourself in a situation that would normally end your life for good.

    Crosshairs:

    The crosshairs symbol changes as a quick visual cue to tell you what actions you can take.

    • White = no action
    • Blue = can take life
    • Green = can give life / attack

    Colorblind?  No worries, the devs thought of that!  Each color is also a slightly different shape:  White is three separate triangles, Blue is three triangles touching each other, and Green is three separate triangles with lines between them.

    The Enemies:

    I probably spent the first hour just exploring, bringing things back to life, collecting acorns, and trying out my suit.  To be honest, I - for a moment - thought, "Do I really want to play Valley right now?  It's kind of boring... " I did, of course, decide to go back and play some more, and I'm so glad I did.  There aren't a huge variety of enemies, and they're not terribly challenging, but they certainly added some zest to the game!  Between the story and the appearance of my first enemies, I really started enjoying the game.

    You would think that "taking life" would be the proper response to enemies, but it won't do you any good... What you need to do is shoot them with your "giving life" energy.  Here's a secret for those who would like a bit of an advantage during gameplay:
    Spoiler:
    Try jumping through an amrita swarm once you've quelled it... it will fill up four bars of power, and you can do so as many times as necessary to get to full power!

    Collectibles and Upgrades:

    I've mentioned them a couple of times, so it's about time I listed them.

    • Story element pages
    • 8 "Easter Egg" pages (references to another game by this dev - you'll know them by the "unintelligible sketchings" popup that appears when you get close)
    • Golden Acorns (used to open "acorn doors")
    • Medallions (used to open pyramid doors)
    • L.E.A.F. suit upgrades (mostly found via normal story progression)
    • Power modules for L.E.A.F. suit

    Quick Info:

    • No real puzzles
    • Revival of our character comes at cost of living things around you
    • Can "pull" orbs to you by using the "take life" button - you don't have to physically touch them to collect
    • Collectible items will either glow or flash
    • The "crosshairs" symbol changes to reflect possible actions (see "Crosshairs" above)
    • Shooting enemies is not a primary - or even secondary - focus, so don't expect to spend a lot of time doing so
    • Some platforming required, including an area where you have to take action mid-air.  (Not as difficult as in A Story About My Uncle

    Achievements:

    There are 30 achievements to be had in Valley.  Many come via story-progression, but you're going to have to work for some of them!  If you're an achievement-hunter like me, I definitely recommend checking out the list (or my spoiler), because if you're not careful, you could end up having to re-play the game.
    Spoiler:
    The achievement:  Immortality - Complete the game without the valley dying

    When you play through a chapter, you have objectives that you need to complete listed in the top right corner... but when you go back to re-play a chapter, it will tell you how many collectibles are left in that region!  Bonus!  Evil Grin  Be aware that achievements - like finding a certain item - won't show up on the list.

    Final thoughts:

    Valley is a glorified walking simulator with some shooting later in the game.  It's not going to be something that appeals to everyone.  Me?  I loved it.  The combination of music and visuals is enchanting, and the story was interesting enough that I wanted to keep playing to find out more.  My only disappointment is that I really would have liked to see an epilogue, but that aside, I had a lot of fun with this title, and will be going back in to get the rest of my achievements.  Definitely a new favorite.  Okay


    _________________
    Never be a prisoner of your past.
    It was just a lesson, not a life sentence.

    Valley O9fj

      Current date/time is Wed Apr 01, 2020 2:21 am