In December of last year, indie developers Moral Anxiety Studios released their second game, Tales From Windy Meadow. You may remember me mentioning them on my blog, as in February, of the same year, I interviewed them about the game and development process. The game follows three characters who live in the village Windy Meadow, the game introduces us to them just as each character is about to make a major life decision. From leaving the village to getting married, it is up to the player to define the fate of each of these characters.
Set up: Three individual chapters (can be done in any order) and one conclusion chapter
Play time: ~2 hours
Available on: Steam (Windows Only)
While the game may look like a side scroller action game, it actually works as a visual novel. Throughout each character’s chapter you’re given dialogue and action choices, which ultimately culminate in the ultimate choice in the last chapter. On top of dialogue choices, you can also hover over character’s names to get a bit of insight into who they are and their place in the village. It’s particularly interesting when the same character pops up in multiple chapters as you can see the different perspectives towards them from our three characters.
I have to say, I’ve not played many games with pixel art in them, so I never realised how detailed and intricate they could be. It was pretty incredible seeing the way weather, and even night / day were animated using pixel art. Characters shadows and movements were particularly interesting, especially in the background when our mains were talking. It was fun to actually see what was going on around our mains, rather than just staring at a static background.
One thing that you may have noticed is that the play time for this game is quite short. From the start of the game, I was immediately intrigued by each of these character, but just when I felt I knew them, the game finished. I would have loved maybe an hour or so more, just to see other perils or issues in the character’s lives or even just the things that make them happy. Or, what I would have enjoyed even more, is a short epilogue about how they went on their respective paths. I know the credits had some artwork, but even just a few lines would have rounded the game off perfectly.
Another note I want to add is that I found the game does not have much replay value. If you’re someone keen on Steam achievements, my final count of 10/12 achievements was due to just loading a save point in the final chapter. Personally, I didn’t mind this, as I enjoyed the story as is, but I know it is an issue that might put off some people.
Tales from Windy Meadow is an exciting game from Moral Anxiety Studios. I was intrigued by each character’s journey, and enjoyed the build up to their final decision. I just would have liked the game to have been a tad longer. As it was only in the final chapter I had settled into the workings of the village and knowing the characters. Graphics wise, I was really impressed by the animation and art in the game. I can tell a lot of hard work and love has gone into this game, and it was definitely an enjoyable play.
Thank you to Moral Anxiety Studio for proving me with a key for the game to review.