Publisher: Clouded Leopard Entertainment Inc.
Platforms: PS4, Switch PC
Reviewed On: Switch
Release Date: 28/01/2021
Reviewed By: Keith Lavelle
Review Rush was kindly supplied with a review code.
SO.. Marchen Forest where the hell do I begin with this totally bizarre and bat shit crazy game. I have not for a long time or ever played something like this before. They split the game in to two parts, almost as if the devs wanted to experiment before moving on. I honestly do not know what was even happening for the first few hours.
You play as Mylne an apprentice apothecary who is tasked by her grandfather to collect ingredients to improve her skills. Mylne finds a cave in the forest and delves to the darkness of the forest cave.
On paper it sounds simple enough to find the ingredients, yeah.. NO! While in the forest Mylne will meet a strange bird thing called Galaxarth the Wanderer who is there to offer Mylne advice. It only gets weirder; there is Alice who likes the Bard (most normal NPC in the forest). Who would be at home in a Tim Burton movie. Not to mention Aliens, a rabbit who is on something, a scientist who is trying to empty a river and a few others.
I stumbled my way through this episode, looking everywhere and talking to everything multiple times. Most on the ingredients I found were by sheer luck. The best part is easily the Mushroom Quiz. Mylne will be asked questions about Mushrooms and unless you are a Mycologist, you will have no chance of answering some questions.
I did not have a clue what I was even doing with this Episode or even if I liked it. Then I got to Episode 2, and it was totally different for what I just experienced.
Episodes 2 and 3 in Marchen Forest are where the meat of the game takes place, and they are again totally different from the first episode and slightly different from each other.
The start of Episode 2 you will enter the cave under the forest and start the dungeon crawling. A total contrast to the previous Episode. This section Mylne will wander around dungeons, entering random fights with monsters to level up and progress. Like all Dungeon crawlers you will find loot, trying to dodge traps, opening doors and keeping stocked up on food.
The fights are fairly simple with block, attack and dodge. Most fights in this episode will require Mylne to dodge and attack, with some enemies needing attacks to be blocked. If the block is timed correctly, the enemy will be stunned and Mylne can perform a special move that will do major damage. I hardly used block in this Episode as I felt it did not need it if I was honest. Most of the battles break down to knowing what attacks the enemies do, and the tells they use.
Like in the first Episode, it is very simple and will cause players minor issues. It again feels like the developers had an idea and had not fully developed it. Then I got to Episode 3.
Here it felt like the developers of Marchen Forst got their act together and ironed out ideas they had in to something that engaging hard and food management is a must. The PC fans wanted more of a challenge, so PrimaryObit said “hold my beer!” oh my, they delivered.
Just like in Episode two, the dungeon crawling is essentially the same, with a few differences. That makes this Episode feel more like a rougelike as you will die a lot. Enemies hit harder, have more health, it feels like there are more traps and that everything is out to make your life harder.
The battles are the same here well somewhat the same. Mylne get some help and by golly she needs it. Timed blocks are a necessity in order to deal out damage. Don’t get the times right and you have as much chance of beating this game as you do climbing Mount Everest with only your hands. The block has to be mastered, even if you master the block you are going to die.
Then we have food, Mylne must be hungry as she devours her food supply and some chest will also consume food to open them. Making sure that you have food is a must.
Even with the difficulty ramped up, this episode feels the most complete and what the developers were aiming for. Also was the most enjoyable part of the game.
I honestly think that Marchen Forest: Mylne and the Forest Gift will put a lot of players off with the first episode alone. This will be a massive shame as the game finds its feet after this part. I did not know what I was getting to to when I started it and the first episode I was like what have I done. However, I loved the rest of the game.
Can I recommend Marchen Forest I don’t know? If you enjoy the weird and wonderful and experimental, it could be for you.