Game: A Winding Path
Genre: Puzzle, Adventure, Indie
System: Steam, Windows
Developer | Publisher: Three Eyed Games
Controller Support: Yes
Price: US $7.99 | UK £5.79 | EU € 6,59
Release Date: August 26th, 2021
Review code used, with many thanks to Three Eyed Games
A Winding Path is a black-and-white, simple sketch-style game filled with puzzles and interaction. The game is simple with very basic graphics, but it has some interesting and complex gameplay.
The Story and Gameplay
In A Winding Path, players are a young stick figure that needs to help out everyone around him in order to complete puzzles. In a world filled with cyclopes, trolls, and other mystical critters, you will find the magic you need to heal the forest and the sea with the power of kindness.
Players wander through towns and forests looking for ways to bring the rain back to a parched world. Interacting with others moves the story forward and gives the player quests to help heal the land.
The controls are as simple as the graphics; players have the basic move buttons (you can use WASD or the directional keys), E is the interact key, and players can eventually use and instrument to play notes with 1, 2, 3, and 4.
There are two collectables in the game: teardrops and hats. There is 12 total that can be found in the about two hours worth of gameplay. There are also four hats, and each of these hats can be worn at any time. Each hat changes the dialogue for some of the NPCs out in the world when you are wearing it.
The Pros of A Winding Path
This game is short and very, very sweet. While it’s only about two hours long, there’s a lot of heart and soul packed into those two hours. The puzzles are unique and fun, involving a surprising number of different mechanics. You don’t just chat with people, move to the next person, and keep talking to others until the game is finished; there’s a lot to do from an archery contest to catching cats and singing back to birds.
The background music is both soothing and fits well with the setting and the look of the game. It’s fairly repetitive, but it isn’t invasive or loud, so that did not bother me at all. Just a piece of calming lute music playing gently as you explore this sketched world.
While someone might not enjoy the simple, pencil-sketched look of the game, but to me it was charming. The characters are interesting even if you can’t see their faces or expressions. A Winding Path is worth a playthrough even if you don’t like the look; the need for realistic graphics pales in comparison to everything else the game offers.
The Cons of A Winding Path
It’s too short. When I finished the game, I was really hoping against hope that there was another chapter. I knew it was short, but I was so sad when it ended. Hopefully, Three Eyed Games will add more as time goes on. I kind of wish that there was a short of checklist of live quests, but that didn’t really take away from the experience.
If there is nothing you can think of that’s wrong with a game except that it’s too short, then that’s probably a really good game. It’s worth the $8 USD, even with the short length. I had a lot of fun playing this short romp through a pencilled-in world, and I think anyone who likes chill meditative titles will also dig A Winding Path as well.
Final Verdict: Two Thumbs Up: