Review: Ravenlok – A Beautiful Adventure Set in a Gorgeous Fairytale World

Ravenlok Downloads

Developed and published by indie developer Cococucumber, Ravenlok is a fairytale adventure where you step into the shoes of a little girl called Ravenlok and overthrow an evil queen who has taken over a world inside a mirror. If you loved fairytales when you were little and always wanted to explore them, thanks to Ravenlok you can do so now because when you step into the world of the game, it feels like you have arrived in a fairytale world. Filled to the brim with charm and character, this beautiful tale not only looks gorgeous but also delivers a wonderful gaming experience. This is our review of Ravenlok on Xbox Series X in which we kill some evil mushrooms and land some cool attack moves on a giant food monster.

The game starts with you, a little girl, arriving at a farmhouse with your mother and father who are settling in a new place, and you are helping them with moving different things here and there. Upon entering the barn and finding a strange mirror inside, you are whisked to a magical land called Dunia where an evil queen has taken over and is terrorizing the locals. Upon arriving here, you take on your role of Ravenlok and set out on an amazing adventure through Dunia in order to free the world and defeat the evil queen Dreda. Throughout the world of Dunia, you will meet a lot of bunnies and plenty of different NPCs and explore beautiful worlds, all designed in voxel art.

Review: Ravenlok

The gameplay of Ravenlok is pretty-straightforward where you will have a sword and a shield, and you block with your shield and attack with your sword. As you progress in the main story of the game, you will unlock additional skills which once used need to be recharged before using again and then you have some items with you which will complement the combat like bombs and health potions. The bombs might sound like they have elemental effects on them like Ice Bomb or Poison Bomb but in reality, they just deal more damage to your enemies. You can use these items from your quick-use slot which is a neat addition to combat. The triggers and bumpers are dedicated to your four advanced skills and pressing Y allows you to block incoming damage. You can also use dodge to block incoming attacks and you get an invincibility window while dodging as well.

Apart from fighting enemies, there is plenty of exploration in the game as well. While the game is in full 3D, the camera is locked to one side, and it only shows the view from the front. You can revolve it around a little bit, but you cannot look at what is behind the screen since the camera does not go there so if you are fighting a boss in an open area and they go behind the screen, you cannot move the camera all around to look at them. This feels a little annoying at the start but once you get used to it, it does not feel like a big hindrance in gameplay in any way. You have an inventory as well but there is no inventory management system, and it just shows what items you currently have in your inventory.

My favorite thing about Ravenlok has to be its beautiful and amazing voxel-art visuals and the whole fairytale-inspired world design. While playing Ravenlok, you actually feel like you are exploring a fairytale world that we used to imagine back when we were kids. It is so good and well-designed. The environments are diverse and completely different from one another, and each area feels completely different from each other in terms of aesthetics and design. Whether you are exploring the Mask Mansion or the Mushroom Forest, each location has its own charm, and this is what pulls you into the game. You will find a different set of enemies in every location, and they will be completely different from enemies that you will encounter in any other location of the game.

Each area is filled with different NPCs as well who you can interact with and help out. Most of the NPCs will instantly give you a quest and I like the fact that each quest is somehow related to another one. It gives you the impression that even though you are given a lot of quests at the same time which might fill your quest log fairly quickly, you can only do them in a sequence that sort of gives an open-world campaign-type feel. You will need an item for one quest but first, you have to solve another quest with a puzzle and that will give you another quest which finally unlocks the item that will reward you with the item required for the first quest. By the time you are at the final boss battle, all of that quest baggage is cleared, and I love how the game bombards you with quests and then as you start playing the game, everything just fits right into its place.

Review: Ravenlok

The quests are what you would normally expect from an adventure game. Some of the quests are fetch item quests, some are boss battles, some are normal battles, and some will require you to solve puzzles. Nearly all of the quests are interlinked with the main story of the game despite you getting them at the same time. While the game gives you an open world to explore, certain elements are unlocked with progression only which makes it somewhat linear as well. For quickly transporting around, you use a magic mirror and after you re-visit an area, all of the enemies and breakable environmental objects respawn which gives you an RPG-like feeling sometimes. Some of the NPCs will unlock additional benefits for you as well if you help them out like unlocking bonus shops and new mechanics.

There are multiple shops in the game that will sell you different items like bombs and health potions. You can also craft the health potions yourself by visiting a particular NPC. There are two in-game currencies, coins, and feathers. As you unlock in-game shops and earn coins, you will use these coins to purchase items from the shops while feathers are used to upgrade yourself. There is no generic leveling up in the game so you will have to visit an NPC and pay them in feathers to ‘purchase’ the next level which will increase your base stats like health, dodge speed, attack power, and more. As you continue to level up, every next purchase becomes more and more expensive so you will need to grind for feathers to reach the maximum level in the game. The enemies are not tailored to your level but rather are leveled according to your chosen difficulty level.

The whole playthrough of Ravenlok will take you around 8 hours to complete even if you are a completionist and would explore every last bit of the game world and collect every last collectible found in its world. The Xbox Series X|S version of Ravenlok runs pretty well on the console and there are no visual hiccups or glitches of any sort. It is a very stable release. While the game may not be very demanding on the hardware, I have seen a lot of similar games deliver a really bad experience with choppy visuals and dropping framerates but I am happy to report here that technically, Ravenlok is a great release as well just as it is aesthetically. Every aspect of the game runs just like it is intended to be. Given the short length of the game, it is very much possible for you to complete it in just one sitting, which is great given the number of games releasing these days.

Final Verdict:

Ravenlok hit me with a surprise, and it is one of the very few games that managed to do that. The voxel-art visuals are gorgeous to look at and the in-game actually feels like a fairy-tale world that we had in our minds while growing up. I loved the NPCs and loved the little quests that they gave me. For casual players, Ravenlok is an absolute treat since it packs nearly all the mechanics a good adventure game has and presents them in a very simple manner. The gameplay is solid, and the soundtrack of the game is really good as well. I am just sad that this game is short and would have loved it if it were a little bit longer. Still, while it lasts, Ravenlok is a love letter to every child who dreamed about fairylands and loved to explore them one day. If you are a professional gamer who has played every single adventure game out or if you are just a casual gamer who occasionally dips into a few titles, Ravenlok is a good game for you to play and I will encourage you to try it out when you can.

Final Score: 9.0/10

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About the Author: Umair Khalid

Founder of GamesHedge, Umair enjoys a wide variety of video games ranging from RPGs to racing games. Currently busy with The Crew Motorfest and Way of the Hunter.

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