Game Review: Aer: Memories of Old

AER: MEMORIES OF OLD
Developer: Forgotten Key/Daedalic Entertainment
Release Date: August 28, 2019 (Switch)
Genre: Adventure puzzle
Platform: Switch
RRP: $19.99 AUS

 

Transform into a bird and fly to explore and experience a vibrant world of floating islands in the sky.

The gods of old are forgotten, lost in the events that shattered the world, leaving only fragments of islands in the sky. This mystic world of endless skies, colourful islands and ancient ruins is in danger of falling into darkness. As one of the last few shapeshifters, you are sent on a pilgrimage to the Land of Gods. Uncover the secrets that will help save reality itself.

Fly and explore by transforming into a bird at will.
A large open world of hidden secrets and new discoveries.
A pilgrimage of mysteries, puzzles and temples.
Strong focus on atmosphere and aesthetics with a vibrant minimalistic art style.

Aer: Memories of old is an amazing little indie game that shouldn’t take too long to complete, even for dedicated casual gamers and indie newcomers like myself.

The story can be a bit complicated if you delve into all the worldbuilding and backstory, but it’s not too taxing if you simply skip from quest to quest. However it’s also an incredibly beautiful story with a deep and rich history of what occurred before the events of the game, and to get the full experience, it’s best to explore and uncover everything.

The flight mechanics are simply the best I have ever tried, and I consider myself a fan of flying games. You can flap to gain speed, and as you do so, the camera pulls back, giving you better vision. You can bank and turn, though you cant somersault or U-turn. You can be unaware of how fast you’re travelling between islands until you go to land, as my husband does, by shifting back into human and cannonballing across the landscape.

There’s no voice acting in this, and all the story is given via text that you can unlock by interacting with various NPCs and items.

I’ve played it on both the Switch and the PC, and I have to say that due to the minimalist graphics, I prefer it on the less powerful Switch. The PC version looks kind of scary, while the Switch version is softer, making the angular eyeless faces look far less creepy.

The soundtrack by Cajsa Larsson is gorgeous and I’ve played it in Spotify. There’s something about the music that just makes me so happy: and since there’s no voice acting, the music also plays an important part in the story and changes to suit the area you travel to. It is simply so pleasant and relaxing to fly around listening to this soundtrack.

While there’s no fighting, there’s some suggested violence in the backstory which you can unlock by exploring (it can be a bit confronting in such a peaceful game!), and the puzzles are a really great mix of simple and so confusing I had to check a walkthrough. However, there’s no shame in needing to check a walkthrough! That’s what they’re there for. Better than quitting in frustration because I can’t finish it.

Overall I found Aer to be a wonderful introduction to indie games and I’m really sad that the studio closed down as I would be totally invested in the abandoned sequel and have already started replaying this: however, it does mean that the game is often on sale on your preferred platform.

All video games are purchased by myself or gifted from a friend.

Nemo
Nemo

About Nemo

A lover of kittens and all things sparkly, Nemo has a degree in English Literature and specialises in reviewing contemporary, paranormal, mystery/thriller, historical, sci-fi and fantasy Young Adult fiction. She is especially drawn to novels about princesses, strong female friendships, magical powers, and assassins.

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