If you remember the days gone by of point-and-click adventure games, then hold on tight. Because, this latest and greatest adventure game is definitely going to be up your street. From Ron Gilbert, (one of the developers from Lucas Arts) comes the brand new and exciting thrill ride that is Thimbleweed Park. A new but classic; just like Monkey Island or Day of the Tentacle, you can explore, click, and puzzle your way through the world. This game is full of cliches, laughs and A LOT of references Set in the quiet and quaint town of Thimbleweed Park, part of Thimbleweed County, you are instantly swept up in the drama. As you attempt to solve a murder, you soon find out, there is more to this town than meets the eye. So, sit back and enjoy while I unveil to you the not-so-exotic, Thimbleweed Park.
Thimbleweed Park starts out with a bang. A mystery man is killed and we have to figure out who did it. This is when Agents Reyes and Ray step in. But, already things aren’t what they seem. Thimbleweed Park made its fortune thanks to the genius of a man called Chuck. He built a Pillow Factory. The best damn pillow factory that ever existed apparently because it made him famous. But, then things went awry and the pillow factory burned down. Now, Chuck is dead, this mystery man is dead and a whole lot of people are about to get swept up in the crazy events. From an insulting clown who swears a lot to the niece of Chuck himself, everyone has their own reasoning for being in Thimbleweed Park.
This story has a lot of twists and some interesting turns. Even when you think you may have caught the killer, it doesn’t end there. You instantly want to know what is going on in this kooky place, especially once you start playing as a ghost. For the most part, it has you wanting to know more and the further through the story you get, the more you need to know. Played out through Chapters, each successive one only gets better and more complex until the climax of the game. This is a thrill ride if there ever was one. And, done in this adventure game style makes it all the more enjoyable.
If you have never played a point-and-click adventure game, then you missed out on some great times. The endless struggle of not knowing what that piece of paper you picked up was for is equally fun and frustrating. When it comes to adventure games like this, you have to try everything. Even if it makes no sense to you at all. The great thing about Thimbleweed Park is that it does give you some clues as to what you need to do. Other, older adventure games often left you stumped for hours trying every possibility and talking to every NPC. Fortunately, in this one, you are given a TO DO list. I have to say, this was immensely helpful. If I was ever stuck, I could just check my list. And, each character has a different list.
Aside from this, Thimbleweed Park plays like any other adventure game. With a lot of puzzle solving, pixel hunting and exhausting every dialogue option. The thing is, being able to play as 4/5 different characters means this takes a lot longer. Still, it doesn’t take away from the hilarity of the game.
Graphics & Sound
Despite this game coming out this year, 2017, it kept true to its roots. The graphics are done in the pixel art style and to be honest, I think it really works for this style of game. I know not everyone is a fan, but if you grew up playing these games, then it will certainly feel nostalgic. Just don’t mistake pixel art for low quality though. And the sound effects and music just add to that nostalgia. I really think this is a well crafted piece and I welcome this return of the adventure game.
When you say point-and-click, it really does what it says on the tin. Using just a mouse, you can interact with characters and the environment by clicking on them. There is of course the UI which gives you other options such as “Push” or “Use” or “Give” to help you solve some of the puzzles. It is a very basic layout that anyone could use with ease. The difficulty comes about when you need to figure out which one to use for which puzzle.
This entirely depends on your knowledge of point-and-click adventure games. If you have never played on before, then you are likely to struggle with the puzzle solving. However, if you are a seasoned pro like myself, then you won’t find it as difficult. That being said, these types of games require a different type of thinking. If you have a knack for puzzle solving, then you may find Thimbleweed Park not much of a challenge. It’s all about knowing how the developers like to put in clues and trying out your possibilities. I have played several adventure games like this and I still struggle. But, then I just take that as more hours of fun. Plus, it is far more satisfying when you do eventually figure out what to do.
There probably isn’t a whole lot of replayability within this one. Perhaps years down the line, you may want to come back to it. But, once you know the puzzles, it sort of loses it’s charm. Unless you wanted to try and do a speed run in which case that could have some replay value in it. However, just purely based on the type of game it is, I think you get enough out of one play through to keep you happy until the next adventure.