I wasn’t sure what to expect when introduced to this game. “First person exploration game built in a surreal organic world that reacts to your presence,” is the description from Steam which is unlike anything else I had ever played. My curiosity was piqued and I am so grateful I got this opportunity to review what I can only describe as a visual and musical masterpiece. Welcome to Shape of the World from Hollowtree Games, AKA Stu Maxwell, and our Nintendo Switch review.
Shape of the World begins like you’re emerging from a cloud, a sleeping fog. Nothing exists until the melody begins that feels and sounds like creation might have the first day the earth spun on its axis. When possible with every review I do, I like to play it off the cuff – see what I can discover without prior knowledge and I admit at first I was confused but just in those moments the triangle I fondly name “my angel” appeared on the horizon to guide me. At my feet; tiny blue mushroom style critters chatter, coaxing me to walk with them and so I do – suddenly rock formations. Before you discover you can’t go any further, your breath has already slowed, and your thoughts have cleared of anything you were thinking of prior to the game. You sit back more comfortably, receptively. The music beautifully composed floating by.
— Brent Silk (@brentsilk) June 4, 2018
Like many, I enjoy games that have detail, strategic combat, economy and systems. Shape of the World has none of these things but it is so on point with subtle wonder it captivated my attention completely regardless. As soon as I figured out how to travel, then experienced my first handful of environment changes – my navigators heart was soaring! Available on PS4, XboxOne, PC and Nintendo Switch I am curious if Switch is the most difficult platform to glide over the stairways you build so you can continue progressing?
The only other qualm I have is that the game is too short, it takes two-three hours and I admit I have purposely refrained from finishing as I am not ready for this feeling of euphoria to end so lets hope that this is just a beginning for Shape of the World with other versions planned for the future.