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The Night Of The Rabbit

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By Kelevandos06-08-2013
Bis18marck70 (editor)
MrJenssen (editor)
The Night Of The Rabbit

The Defence

Developer:
Daedalic Entertainment
Publisher:
Daedalic Entertainment
Genre:
Adventure
Release Date:
29-05-2013

The Prosecution

CPU:
Intel Core 2 Duo 2.0 GHz
AMD equivalent
VGA:
Nvidia GeForce 8600
AMD equivalent
RAM:
4 GB
HDD:
6 GB
DirectX:

The Case

 

Have you ever dreamt of having magical powers? Or your imagination take you beyond the four drawing-and-poster-covered walls and into mystical worlds from within your head? Only he who once was a child himself, even if the time long past, would believe in the story of 12-years-old Jerry. Would you laugh out loud, or rather smile, hearing that the greatest dream of little Jeremiah Hazelnut was to become a magician - and that it actually came true?

The Trial

 

The story begins in the clearing next to the house where Jerry happily lives with his mother. The first quest isn’t quite epic, involving gathering some berries for a pie, but in the meantime, our little hero is starting to discover that something has changed in the forest and soon, after performing a mysterious ritual of conjuring the “carrot flame”, he ends up summoning a humanoid rabbit named Marquis de Hoto - a “Treewalker”. This is where the true adventure begins – Jerry becomes the Rabbit’s apprentice, traveling through portals, visiting different worlds and learning spells from each of them, in order to complete his training. Even though still childlike, his readiness to help the inhabitants of every world gains Jerry the favour of almost every being he meets along the way, including unique personas like mailman Plato The Frog, the nostalgic Moth Women and a grumpy Leprechaun.

If only she could know how right she was...

If only she could know how right she was...

The story resembles one of those fairy tales we used to listen to every evening as children. However, it is more unpredictable, and brings out way stronger emotions. As for the gameplay, some of the puzzles may appear too obvious, but the other time you find yourself with lots of stuff looking completely useless, supposed to move on somehow. Honestly, there are moments where the temptation to look for a solution or a guide gets really strong. However, the devs gave us an opportunity to play more laid-back and without feeling lost. The very first spell we learn, Advice Seeker, makes Jerry hear a telepathic message from the Marquis, giving us some hints. When running out of ideas, we can look through an enchanted coin with a hole, making invisible things appear and causes all the clickable objects to shine.

A feature that turns The Night of The Rabbit into something one of a kind is the built-in card game “Quartets” which is about collecting four cards of the same type – based on well-known Old Maid, but with a twist. Collectible cards can be found along the story, in various places, but the game itself is accessible whenever you find a partner to play with. They also borrow you the cards you lack in our collection. Borrowed cards have no pictures on them so you’re constantly motivated to keep a look out for these tiny trophies, especially because every card has its meaning, as explained in one of the cinematics.

This mouse is so very much more intelligent than it would seem.

This mouse is so very much more intelligent than it would seem.

Another interesting aspect of gameplay is the possibility to switch between day and night. To solve some riddles, we have to investigate both in daylight and moonlight. A friendly warning though - this can make your head explode!

Cutscenes and animations look like old-fashion cartoons with improved graphics. Not to mention the unique design of every single character and the captivating look of different maps. Altogether, the graphics artists came up with a true masterpiece. The only drawback I could see is that when Jerry gives an item from his inventory to someone, or is supposed to combine two items, his hands remain empty, with him only performing a gesture and so does the character you interact with, as if they were playing or simulating something. “I did that on purpose!” says Jerry in Quartets game when he makes a mistake.

Music creates a nice background and helps to fully immerse you in the game world. Most of the time during the scenes in Mousewood, a town located in the heart of the forest where we spend most of the game, the sounds are calming, like relaxed music. Once, I actually left the game running on the computer and snoozed for a while, listening to the sounds of nature. There are a few moments when the music becomes dynamic or even aggressive, immediately catching the player’s attention. All this makes one want to listen to the soundtrack over and over again. As for the voice acting - it is also incredibly good. Every character has their own voice which matches them and sounds believable. Thumbs up for the voice actors, who did a very good job!

A somewhat original way to spend Christmas.

A somewhat original way to spend Christmas.

As in lots of games you have the option to turn subtitles on but there were a few moments when they did not appear. This was especially disturbing when listening to the mumbling of talking rocks (yes, that’s right, talking stones with faces), which was actually quite hard to understand.

The Verdict

 

Who will enjoy this game? It is suitable for all ages. The puzzles are made in such a way that they could pose a true challenge to anyone, it is not a question of age or knowledge but rather of creativity and...patient clicking! It has the PEGI 3 mark, so everyone is invited to try out The Night of The Rabbit. If you wonder how to entertain your kid, do not hesitate to show them this game – it can keep children busy for hours. Could it be boring for the older gamers? Definitely not! Crazy achievements, like collecting drops of water or tiny stickers won’t allow you to complain about boredom. Sure, the gameplay may not appear as challenging for the point’n’click veterans as for the total beginners, but if you like fairy tales and going back to your childhood - pack your things up and join Jerry on his great adventure!

Case Review

  • Fairy Tale Land: Amazing graphics, unique characters design, long and interesting cinematics.
  • Point’n’Click: Interesting puzzles to resolve, challenging, but accessible for all ages.
  • The Journey: Around 20 hours of gameplay guaranteed.
  • For the Premium: Extra content in the Premium Edition contains a soundtrack and 8 collectible audiobook stories to listen from the bonus menu.
  • Little Extras: Built-in card game “Quartets” based on the popular Old Maid.
  • Something to Nit-pick: the absence of item in the main character’s hand while giving it to someone or combining it with another item.
5
Score: 5/5
A trip back to childhood for adults and a breath-taking adventure for little dreamers.

Appeal

The first thing you will notice about Night of the Rabbit, is the music. It will mesmerize you. As good as the rest of the game is, all that just gets overshadowed by the wonderful, wonderful music, and the audio presentation in general. But that does not mean that the rest is mediocre. Not even close to true. The charming visuals and animations closely resembles a fairy tale book so much so that it just brought me back to when I was little and my parents used to read me stories. And the game is full of that vibe.

Unfortunately, with all that charm, there still are few frustrating elements leaking through. One of them is the rather long loading time between scenes. Every time you go from one background to another, it takes a fair bit of time on a rather powerful PC. This is especially noticeable when you feel stuck and just go through the world trying to find something you’ve missed. The time really stacks up and the impatience starts to really bother you.

But this adventure game of the old kind, even with its very few flaws, is something you just have to try. Even if you are not that big on point and click adventures. It is a good game on its own, but the side effect of bringing warm childhood memories is even nicer. It’s very children friendly but it’s not just some kid’s game. Though it could probably be played with a kid before bedtime. Could it be the “Fairy Tale” 2.0?

4.5
Score: 4.5/5

Appeal

The Night of the Rabbit was a game I had my eye on from the moment I first saw it. Like some odd mix of Alice in Wonderland, Tim Burton and Wind in the Willows. Such disparate, but oddly similar elements that all came together surprisingly well. Being a point and click adventure, primarily a very static game, environmentally speaking, has a graphical style more akin to a collection of watercolour paintings. A motif the developers wholeheartedly embraced throughout. But it means that, graphically speaking, there aren't really any graphics to speak of. Not in a game context at least. Apart from character animation, the odd blinking light and some occasional fog and mist effects, it may as well not have any at all. But this is a good thing. The art style is strikingly eerie, and the low system draw will make the game easily playable on a pocket calculator, never mind a gaming PC.

Being a point and click game, the gameplay revolves around solving a series of puzzles, which, naturally, are ludicrously complicated in their simplicity. However, unlike a lot of games that would, say, have you grafting a giraffe’s leg to a lamppost with some honey to entice a jackal to scare away a goat blocking your path...at least Rabbit keeps the theme consistent. Mind bending, yes - truly mind bending - but logically consistent within a world populated by talking woodland creatures and a far too delectable for her own good field mouse on rollerskates.

My only real complaint, which is odd if you know even the slightest thing about my gaming tastes, is that the game is so heavily narrative-based. The story it spins is loaded with weight and is extremely engaging. But everyone give such a grandly theatrical performance that dialogues can drag on a bit. It's not even that they're word heavy, like some unnamed Metal Gear Solids. It really just comes down to how darned long everyone takes to say anything. With all the pauses and the drawn-out intonation. But don't let that put you off. It is well worth enduring. Especially since you can just click to skip dialogue if it becomes really tiresome.

4.5
Score: 4.5/5
Comments (3)
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Posts: 2733

It's semantics, but as I like to put it, it's childlike rather than childish. It has the light whimsy without being silly and immature

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Posts: 1501

It's a bit childish but in a very good way. I feel warm and tingly when I remember this game.

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Posts: 297

This certainly looks.....interesting...=P