Tai is a young boy who takes a summer trip to Toromi Island to visit his grandparents. After arriving on the island, the Maori spirits that inhabit it enter into an all-out war with each other. The spirits are all brothers, and they are fighting over a fishing trip from years ago. However, the battles between the brothers have caused an enormous earthquake on the island, causing problems for the island’s inhabitants.
The story in Reverie is inspired by the legend of Maui and the Giant Fish, where the demigod himself fishes up the North Island with a powerful fishhook.
After Tai finds one of the brothers residing in the basement of his grandparent’s house, he is then given the task of finding the other three brothers and bringing balance back to the Island.
Tai, the hero of Reverie, does not have a sword or a shield. No, Tai is even better equipped for a New Zealand Zelda story. Tai is armed with a cricket bat, a yoyo and some other items. This was such a welcome change. There are no hearts in the game for refilling health, instead, there is PIZZA! As well as Nerf bullets to collect.
The Holiday Island
Reverie: Sweet As Edition draws inspiration from old Zelda games like A Link To The Past. For someone who loved and lived with these games growing up, I was ready to play. The controls are simple: Y to attack with the cricket bat, B to roll, X uses equipped items and R for the other equipped item – I kept the Nerf gun on R. In a dungeon, if you hold A, Tai will be teleported back to where Tai entered the room. Movement is also simple, using an eight-directional D-Pad. The island is split into six distinct areas; there are all very different from each other, from the town to the beach all the way up to the haunted island. The map is not that big but being so distinct makes up for that. Again, it gives the nostalgic Zelda feel. Outside of the town, Tomori Island is a dangerous place with bats, birds, and rats roaming around blocking Tai’s advancements, not to mention earthquakes and landslides. Even with all that going on there are some fun activities to do around the Island. Into Ornithology? Why not collect the feathers scattered around the island. If you prefer something less active, well, Toromi Island has you covered with the ‘Waitamo Range’. Get your dart gun and blast away (dart gun not included). If shooting is not your thing either, visit the arcade! It has the best games in town. After a long day of activities, why not visit the local shop? It may only sell three items, but it’s the best shop in town. The possibilities are endless here on Toromi Island. Still, maybe not the best place to go on holiday.
Dungeons and Bosses
Dungeons are where the story will advance. Within the dungeon, there will be a plethora of enemies to kill. The enemies were never really a danger, though, they were not aggressive and followed random movement patterns for the most part. I did not die once in the five enjoyable hours I played. With puzzles to solve, the puzzles are not that difficult either. They are mainly moving a brick here, press the button there, and not get killed by a laser or water shooting stones. After that is it simple dungeon stuff; collect door keys, kill all the enemies in a room to unlock a door and get the boss key. There are two bosses in each dungeon: a mini-boss and the main boss. Again, nothing is too hard at all. It is a shame that even on the higher difficulty they are not tricky. Once the boss is defeated you get a token that will increase Tai’s health bar by one, and you will get to talk to one of the brothers, who will explain a bit more of the story.
Even if Reverie: Sweet As Edition is not the longest or hardest adventure game, it was really enjoyable. If you feel like playing something that will test yourself more, check out our review of Moonlighter.
The music is very entertaining, from the playful tracks you get on the world map to the individual tunes for each dungeon and the slight change in the boss fights. I would not go as far as to say I would listen to the soundtrack outside of the game but for in-game purposes, it was perfect. The sound effects are, again, done very well, I was particularly fond of the wee noise the weasel or ferret made, which filled me with joy to see it run about squeaking. Swinging that bat makes a satisfying swoosh, and the stone idol’s thump when it hits the ground are just a few examples of the sounds. Rainbite definitely did a good job on the audio.
Visuals & Performance
The visuals have a pixelized style, being very bight and clean. I love the style from Tai’s backwards purple cap to the blobs jumping about the dungeons. It has an isometric view, giving Reverie a 2.5D style like the older Zelda games. Each area and dungeon has a unique style; there is a forest temple, a sand temple and more — each with their own puzzles and bosses. The bosses are unique both in terms of looks and how to defeat them, too.
The game ran fine in both handheld and docked modes, with no slowdown or problems that I noticed — no complaints about the performance from me.
Coming in at a low $12.99 USD or £11.99 GBP, Reverie: Sweet As Edition is worth the money. The story, graphics, dungeons, and gameplay are all well-made and work well. I cannot recommend this game enough for the price.
Interestingly strange story
Nostalgic with a sprinkle of new
Solid gameplay elements
Lovely and bright art style
Little too short