Platformer,  PlayStation 4,  Reviews

Effie Review

Reading Time: 6 minutes

Fast Facts

Title: Effie
Developer: Inverge Studios
Publisher: Gaming Generation Factory
Website: https://effiegame.com/
Genre: 3D Platformer, Action, Adventure
Platform: PS4
Age Rating: PEGI 12
Release Date: 04/07/19
Price: £15.99 – Rapid Reviews was very kindly provided with a review code for this title.

A Cute Folk Tale Platformer

I knew nothing about Effie before I picked it up from the games list, but one thing caught me in an instant; its look. It had a cute look to it that captivated me from the start. Going in, all I knew was that it was a 3D platformer.

It can be a fun way to explore an unknown game. The joy of a fresh discovery.

As far as I can tell, it is the very first game from Inverge Studios and if first impressions are anything it looks like a solid platformer.

However, we don’t deal in first impressions, so how did my journey through this folk tale-like story fare? Was Effie an indie surprise or was I left wanting?

Keep reading this Rapid Review to find out my full thoughts on Effie for PS4.  

Effie PS4 Review

Audio Visual

The game is an instant throwback to the games I grew up playing. Jax and Daxter, Ratchet and Clank, and yes, to a degree Banjo-Kazooie.

A third person 3D action platformer with an aesthetic design that is cute and cartoonish but carries itself well. It has a simplistic rustic appeal yet is a deceptively deep game when it comes to exploration.

Likewise, the world around you, Oblena, has a simplistic beauty to it, yet offers multiple regions filled with diverse structures, interesting and creative enemies and puzzles that while not overly challenging offered a nice moment of pause for thought.

It’s clear that the developers put their passion into this project, as they tried to capture all the classic game elements and mixed them with a modern feel.

The vocal work is also strong, with the narrating character, Galand, having that desired storyteller’s quality to it. That deep and soft tone that really pulls you in and gets you invested in the story.

Effie PS4 Review

Gameplay

Unlike many of the games that inspired the team to make Effie, Galand does not have a living counterpart to aid him in his adventure. There is no Laylee to his Yooka. However, in a fitting fashion, he does have a counterpart in the form of his magic-infused rune shield.

The more you play and the more you explore, the more rune stones you will find and collect. These lead to both Galand and his shield growing stronger. To complement this, you learn new moves as the game progresses. I really like this mechanic as it not only gives you a reason to keep playing but it works well with an ever-increasing difficulty or larger bosses.

The game unfolds in the form of a story. Old Galand is telling young Effie – who I don’t believe knew the story was about him – of a time a young hero was punished for being a bit of a troublemaker by being turned into an old man.

In classic fashion, he needs to prove himself by defeating the witch and cleansing the world of her dark magic.

The game is a semi open-world adventure where exploration is not only offered but encouraged. It offers 5 core levels, each in the form of a new town located somewhere in the Oblena region. Piecing together the map is one of the first puzzles and a clever touch.

Scattered around the world are smaller settlements and areas that present different challenges for you to complete. While not compulsory, they do lead to trophies, for those who chase those, and of course, the ability to gather more runes and further increase Galand’s strength. It’s also fun to use your shield as a hoverboard and speed around the world hitting those boost spots for an extra shot of adrenaline.

Effie PS4 Review

The levels are a nice mix of platforming and puzzle-solving, and from what I experienced there are different ways to navigate certain areas, lending naturally towards exploration, for those inquisitive gamers out there.

Hidden chests also offer nice rewards in the form of rune boosts. Again, these are not often on the regular route but discovered by looking that little deeper. Behind a building, or on the very top of a platforming stage.

I enjoyed the mechanics of the game, and while some of the early fights certainly felt like button bashing, it worked for the game. Then once I learned the Round the World style move and the shield smash, these became mainstay moves.

I do feel that the game could have been a little more challenging. The boss fights were relatively straight forward, and while the final fight was challenging in its length, and platforming requirements, there was a lack of combat with the witch herself that left me feeling a little dissatisfied with the ending. It was good and solid, but I just felt the fight should have involved some actual combat with the core villain and not just her acolytes.

Effie PS4 Review

Collectables

Along with runestone boosts, some chests in each of the main chapter locations contain relics. These relics tell a small story about the stage and set some nice details that bring you more into the lore of the world. These chests are harder to find but when you do, the reward is worth the quest.

Other than expanding your knowledge of the world and, of course, the trophies, there is nothing more to collecting the relics. They are purely optional. There are multiple in each stage and once you have found a few but not seen that trophy notification, you can easily find yourself drifting away from the main quest in search.

Replayability

While there is certainly a charm to the game, I don’t know if it is necessarily going to be one that you play over and over. Yes, for those that want the platinum trophy I think the game will need some more investigation but other than that there is nothing left hanging once you have completed the game.

There is no lingering itch to go back and explore some areas in more detail. There’s nothing wrong with that. Effie is a fun game, and I have no regrets in playing it, and should a physical copy become available it would be a welcome addition to my shelves, but it just doesn’t have the pull or mystery needed to keep me exploring over multiple runs.

Effie PS4 Review

Conclusion

I really enjoyed playing Effie. It was a cute and happy game, and as I have mentioned, it offered a surprisingly deep experience. However, it was very short. Sure, I didn’t explore every additional area, but I was done with the main story in a few hours and spent an hour or so exploring. Say five hours all told and you are done with it.

I think the game warrants more, I think it is good as it is, but I wanted it to be longer. It doesn’t need to be a 15-20-hour game, but maybe one more chapter or at least something more substantial in chapter five before the final encounter would have certainly helped.

I really enjoyed the creativity and the ability to play a game that really took me back to the early days of not only the PlayStation but gaming in general.

I will definitely be keeping my eye on anything new that this developer works on because they have sold me on their skills and abilities as a team and as storytellers with this game.

Rapid Reviews Rating

If you want to get your hands on a copy of the game and learn all about Galand and his battles with evil, you can grab a digital copy right here.

You can find and read our reviews on OpenCritic.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: