A richly detailed fantasy world you’ll never want to leave
Nearwood is your next adventure game addiction. From MagicIndie, the team behind the equally superb The Fool, you can expect more than a fair share of smart puzzles, clever mini-games, quirky characters, and beautiful bits of scenery to admire. It’s the sort of game you won’t want to stop playing until you’ve extracted every secret it has to offer!
Ah, the idyllic life. Hanging out at gazebos, frolicking in the flowers. Jane Lockwood remembers those days well. But her memories aren’t without a dark side. Her mother passed away when she was young, and her father vanished shortly after. Jane spent most of her childhood with her aunt Sheryl. Upon her passing, Sheryl left a note hinting at a secret she had been keeping for years. It seems the magical world Jane pictured when she was growing up was less of a fantasy and more of a real thing. As soon as she arrives at her childhood home, Jane meets Fey, a strange little man who guides her to the realm of Nearwood. And it’s here in Nearwood where you’ll explore sights as strange and wondrous as you could possibly imagine.
Nearwood is a casual adventure game that includes a healthy amount of mini-games, inventory puzzles, and items scattered in every corner of every screen. Using objects you find as you explore, you’ll slowly clear paths that lead to, well, more puzzles to solve and more things to find! Proper hidden object scenes are fairly uncommon in Nearwood. When you do encounter them, they’re generally pretty short and feature item silhouettes you’ll need to pick out in a crowded scene.
Jane will encounter plenty of oddities in the bright fantasy world of Nearwood. From giant rock creatures, to frogs the size of a small car, to plants that could (and would) swallow you whole, this world would be a nightmarish place if it weren’t for the sparkling colors and cheery disposition of your guide. Oh, and let’s not forget about the Snoop-Sees. These small owl-like creatures are hidden throughout the game, turning the entire world of Nearwood into a hidden object scene. Locate them to unlock chapters in a special storybook comic you’ll get to read as you play.
Nearwood is also a visually stunning game. It may be tempting to use words like that when describing games that are “pretty” or “well illustrated,” but in this case, stunning is the only word that fits. Each and every location in Nearwood is brushed with gorgeous colors and vibrant animations. The creatures come alive, the environments feel warm and realistic, and when the evil shadow creature swirls around, you’ll swear it’s made of real smoke. Very rarely do we see casual games with this much attention to the artwork, giving Nearwood yet another trophy to add to its collection.
It’s hard to find an honest fault in Nearwood. The graphics are amazing, the puzzles are tightly constructed and logical, mini-games are creative and challenging, and there are enough extras to keep you entertained for hours. Nearwood is the kind of game that makes you excited to see what awaits you beyond the next bend in the road. For that reason alone, the experience is next to magical.