Ittle has arrived on a strange island; the raft is wrecked and everything looks a little peculiar… How did you get here? Why are you in a tiny pond? And what do you do now…?
Ittle Dew 2 is an action-adventure game which follows Ittle and her side-kick dog Tippsie. After they crash-land on a strange island they must embark on a search for eight ‘pieces’ to create a new raft. As soon as you set off you’ll find more than a few familiarities to the early Zelda titles, and there’s a welcoming simplicity to the adventure ahead.
As you start to venture around you’ll get a little early guidance, but you’re soon left on your own and free to tackle the early dungeons in any order you wish. There’s no complex map as sign posts do a great job of pointing you from one area to the next, or steering you clear of early danger. You’ll soon come across small caves which serve as a great alternative to the main dungeons and some of these hold items while others conceal hidden shortcuts to the other areas.
Progressing through these early sections will maintain a similar visual feel. There’s a cute cell-shaded hand drawn style and colours are bright and vibrant. Everything comes across as geared towards children, and my five year old step-son was more than happy to take control of Ittle as she battled all manner of enemies from strange creatures to more familiar enemies such as wasps. The threat level of enemies is clear from their visual stance. The standard yellow wasps float around looking pretty harmless, but just like any wasp in real life, it’s only harmless until you get too close to the little bastard.
Then there’s the angry looking wasps: orange in colour and flying around more franticly. It’s clear before you get near that these are beasties you don’t want to be swatting at with a rolled up newspaper… Maybe it’s best to avoid them altogether! These colourful visual clues continue through a large percentage of the game, and dangers are marked clearly thanks to the clear and vibrant art style; further making the game accessible for younger and more casual gamers.
Audio follows a similar clear, simple and slightly younger approach. The level of voice acting isn’t quite what you get from some titles, but it’s just about on par with what we’ve come to expect from the genre. There’s also not quite the same level of recognition when it comes to danger; and while the music does change, there’s no audible dynamic adjustment to alert you to danger as quickly as an angry orange wasp.
While you’re searching for your raft-to-be, you’ll come across a wide range of puzzles. Many remain more than manageable for younger gamers, but don’t let that put you off! There’s a very impressive mix meaning more mature gamers will enjoy sections just as much. Ittle Dew 2 does a fantastic job of combining appeal from young to old, and while it’s not a game I’d usually sit and play for hours alone: when sat beside my children watching them continue the adventure, and helping out when required it was far more enjoyable for everyone.
Throughout your adventure you’ll come across a variety of weapons, and while there’s only a handful, each is used in a different way when tackling puzzles. The world is pretty much free reign and open to explore at your will, though you’ll find certain areas blocked off until you have the relevant weapon for progressing. However these are clearly marked, and when you do get the item in question it’s pretty clear what to do next.
Soon enough you’ll start to acquire a couple of raft pieces and the game begins to open up a little more. The variation of locations and enemies you’ll face are as diverse as the puzzles that will challenge you. It’s not quite up to Link’s skyward level, but there’s many titles that won’t offer this level of entertainment and enjoyment for the price.
While Ittle Dew 2 don’t have Skyrim’s stamina or Dragon Age’s discovery but there’s still a good portion of game here to keep you entertained; and at only $19.99, €19.99 or £14.99 it’s pretty good value especially with family on board to help enjoy the adventure.