skabma LadiesGamers

Skábma – Snowfall Review

Game: Skábma – Snowfall
Genre: Indie, Open World, Adventure
Developer | Publisher: Red Stage Entertainment | PID Games, Sunsoft
System: Steam (Windows) (also available on Xbox One, Playstation 4)
Controller Support: Full
Price: US $19.99 |UK £15.49 | EU € 19,99
Release Date: April 22nd, 2022

Review code used with many thanks to Neon Hive.

Herding reindeer and saving the world

Skábma – Snowfall is an open-world adventure game where you play a young boy who has been charged with saving the world. What makes this premise unique is the boy, Áilu, is part of one of the tribes of the native Sámi people of Norway. I had surprisingly heard something of these people; unfortunately, most of what I had heard had to do with the fact that they served as inspiration for the tribe of people featured in the Disney movie Frozen 2. That probably also served as extra motivation to play the game since, from what I had read, the game is quite an accurate representation of their myth and culture.

Skabma Snowfall LadiesGamers
Listening to your grandmother tell a story.

You play as Áilu, a young boy who is tasked with minding the reindeer at the start of the game. You accidentally fall asleep and are later woken by the leader of your tribe because one of the female reindeer has escaped the pen. After a little exploring, you find the reindeer on a cliff edge. Before the two of you can make your way back to the tribe, there is an explosive earthquake of mysterious origin, and you both fall down a hole. Here you find a drum and an ancient spirit, which tasks you with taking the drum and using it to become a Noaidi, a seer of spirits and protector of the land.

Exploring the Beat of your own Drum

This drum is used for all the game mechanics that follow. Beating the drum can, for example, highlight tracks when you have to find someone during an early quest. During the course of tracking down your cousin in the early part of the game, you find an owl statue. After cleansing it using the magic of the drum, you unlock one of several spirits who assist you. What this comes down to, in this case, is a boost to your jump distance. At certain points, it also helps you jump higher.

Skabma Snowfall LadiesGamers
Using the drum to help you see footprints.

Exploration, in general, is easy yet still very forgiving. There are very few things that attack you. There isn’t really fall damage to speak of. You can die, but this only happens at obvious points, like walking into deep water. That, or walking off a very high cliff.

The drum, in a way, plays a role in the music that plays in the background. While you are exploring the environment and beating the drum, this beat seems to add to the music that normally plays in the background. This adds a little extra beat to some of the instrumental tracks that may seem lacking, which is a nice touch. Related to sound, I feel I have to mention the voice acting. It is all done in Sami, which was a nice touch and added to the atmosphere of the game.

Save the forest to Save the World

Throughout the story, there is a strong environmentalist theme with you as the character trying to repair the damage caused to the forest using the magic attached to the drum. At certain story points, after cleansing an area, you get special abilities that you can use to help you navigate the game world or help you solve the puzzles the game throws at you from time to time.

At times, the platforming can be slightly finicky. The log bridges can be especially annoying as if your character does not approach them correctly, he will either slip off the side or not get on the bridge.

Skabma - Snowfall LadiesGamers
Exploring caves for fun and profit.

One wing in the fire

It’s not all fun and games, though. There are a few negatives. The visuals take some getting used to. The character models especially could use some work. They are detailed enough to start with, but their animations when speaking or gesturing needs some refining. Exploring the world is interesting, and certain areas look suitably impressive, but as mentioned earlier, navigating the world can be annoying at certain points.

I don’t know how else to explain it, but the tutorial for the controls or specifically when you get your magical abilities needs some work. It tells you which buttons to press to activate the powers and where to use them, but it’s never quite clear enough. The power that adds a boost to your jump comes to mind. There are points indicated by a beating drum animation that you can use the ability to do a super jump. The problem comes when you have to chain these super jumps together.

It is never clear if you should hold the button down or press it every time you approach the next platform. A lot of this is mitigated slightly by the fact that this version is an alpha build and was being updated as I was playing the game.

Skabma LadiesGamers


Overall I enjoyed the game. It is always interesting to experience new cultures that you didn’t know much about, which was definitely the case here. For me, at least, the game is definitely worth a look for its unique look at a group of people that you don’t hear about often unless you live in that part of the world.

Final Verdict: I Like It a Lot  I like it a lot

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