32 people found this review helpful
Recommended
0.0 hrs last two weeks / 9.6 hrs on record
Posted: Dec 8, 2018 @ 10:11pm
Updated: Dec 8, 2018 @ 10:22pm

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Valley presents a story that could easily parallel our world during WWII that involved futuristic weapons research and development that is lost and forgotten. Decades later, you (the protagonist) chances to stumble upon these ruins within the Valley, an open world where The L.E.A.F. suit allows you to become super human in many ways. Take control of life and death, explore your surroundings, and reveal a story buried within the ruins, of hidden magical beings and power to potentially change the world.

Gameplay is carried out in first-person perspective, mostly casual and adventurous with very few hints of danger. Even still, other aspects of the game will draw you in and keep you occupied and equally thrilled. The very casual mood and atmosphere accompanied by moments of exciting discovery or the limited hints of danger give the variety this game needs in order to be more fun.

The game is quite short, and one of the first things that people will ponder is whether or not it meets expectations for its asking price of $19.99. Anyone can probably hone-in on the story aspect of the game and follow it to its end in about 2-3 hours. I usually am not very skilled with games in the first-person perspective, for not knowing where my feet are, but this game allows you to look down and see your feet all of the time, so it was hardly an issue. I believe that it is well worth that price, although with the game currently on sale at 90% off, the purchase has now become a no-brainer.

As you progress through the game, you will find that your L.E.A.F. suit is capable of upgrades that allows you to do so much more. There are a few additional functionalities that allow you to run faster and jump higher and farther, not to mention perform a few other gravity-defying acts that all are aimed at making this game more fun to explore.

Usually you are set to one task in each stage broken up into different sections, and there are separate stages within the game that you will explore. Your current objective is always on display on-screen so that you always know what you should be doing next. But if your stage is outside, you always have a fairly sizable terrain to explore and to look for hidden crates that may contribute to the lore or give you some additional items that will help you one way or another.

Plus, death is so yesterday when you are equipped with a L.E.A.F. suit that you really don't have to worry about it at all. The suit allows you to really connect with nature so that your life is directly tied to the Valley, so as long as you keep the Valley alive, it will continue to feed you life power to prolong your stay.

The game will allow you to travel to any previous stage you have already visited and completed just by pressing ESC and clicking on "Travel." This is nice if you want to back-track to previous areas where you saw some secret tucked away that you just couldn't reach before. The game automatically saves and there are 4 game slots that you can use. The saving will keep any opened doors or crates as being explored and, but if you restart a section, you will load from the beginning of the stage.

Controls
Recommend Keyboard + Mouse. You can also use a controller if you prefer.

Graphics
Graphics may not be amazing, but for an indie title, this is about as good as you will get. There are many aspects of repeated scenery or use of terrain and plant-life, but this is also befitting of this Valley that is hidden away. This is one of the first views that you get to see after launching the game, and I was drawn in right away:

https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=1584226316

Music
The music is also of very high production value. I have purchased the soundtrack after I played the game so that I can put it on my portable devices to listen to while I am away from my computer.

Audience
This is a great game to get someone into first-person perspective games, because of how casual most of the game is.

Pricing
As above-mentioned, I really do think the base price is reasonable for this game, despite its short nature. I took my time with the game because I wanted to explore as much of it as I can during my first run. Even though I feel like I looked in so many nooks and crannies and made sure I doubled back many sections, I still missed a lot of secrets and the run took me about 7 hours. I was moving really slowly much of the time trying to look for secrets. (I just searched online for Speedruns, and it looks like there are some runs under 12 minutes, so maybe other speedrunners will get into this game too.)

Positives
+Pretty awesome experience through an indie developer
+Fantastic music
+Achievements that are reasonable
+Great environment and playing atmosphere
+Story is interesting to explore, with the abilities presented in this game rather astounding and well thought out
+Apparent speedrunning potential
+Most importantly, a fun adventure

Negatives
-Short, and I am not saying the game is too short, I just wish it were longer after finishing it.
-Some visual elements, as mentioned tend to be repetitive. Only two types of crates for you to open, some more variety would have been nice.

Conclusion
Valley is a casual and short adventure that leaves the player wanting more. It's a wonderful indie work that deserves your time and attention. Even though the base price maybe higher than what many players wish to pay for, it's current sale price makes the game a must-buy, especially if you are always looking for those indie gems that may have slipped through your library.
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