Anna’s Quest Review
Daedalic has made a great name for itself in the gaming industry with some amazing titles and stellar storytelling. I’m not particularly into point-and-click games, but I remember having heard positive things about Anna’s Quest when it was initially released on PC. Now 6 years later, this wonderful 2.5D adventure has made the leap as a direct port to consoles, and boy, I was so glad to have been able to experience this fantastically written tale.
Anna’s Conquest follows our heroine, Anna, who lives a quiet life with her grandpa on a farm that resides at the edge of the dark forest. Anna’s grandpa often tells her to be careful and to make sure she never enters that dreaded place as a terrible witch resides within. However, when grandpa becomes sick, Anna decides that it’s up to her to find the medicine he needs despite being reminded that she should never enter the forest. Unfortunately for our young lass, as soon as she leaves the farm, the wicked witch Winfriede snatches her up. After waking up, Anna finds herself in a locked room, being watched closely by the witch via a security cam. After a few experiments, the witch had confirmed her suspicions to be true in that Anna does, in fact, have an exceptional ability: telekinesis! With her newfound powers, Anna, along with her new friend trapped in a teddy bear, sets off to escape the witch and save her grandpa.
Oh, What a World
Those familiar with the point-and-click genre will feel right at home as the gameplay is pretty run of the mill. You’ll have a variety of objects to interact with and inspect while solving puzzles and combining items to help you progress. A feature that does manage to make Anna’s Quest stand out a bit is the use of her telekinesis. I would have liked to have been able to utilize this ability more as it’s seldom used, and I feel like Daedalic could have done a lot more with this feature. But Anna’s reluctance to use this power also feels very relatable as she’s afraid of the consequences that using this power may have. Having this explained to us as a viewer makes you remember that Anna, even with her quips and smart thinking, really is just a kid. So with telekinesis aside, the gameplay itself is pretty average.
As a puzzle game aimed towards an audience of all ages, I was delighted with the progression of difficulty that increased as the story went on. You’ll find yourself relying more on combining objects to get to the next stage, in the beginning. Eventually moving on to having fewer items to use, making us think more outside of the box with limited resources on hand.
Anna’s Quest is about a 12-ish hour-long story consisting of six episodes. Each episode will give us a series of main objectives while also letting us do some side quests. As the game can be particular in the progression of completing a specific task, you may come to find yourself completing some side quests along the way. Some mini-games you can play because of these tasks, but if you want the main meat and potatoes of the game, or if you’re speedrunning it, you can easily skip these if needed.
A Beautiful Journey
The character designs and imagery of Anna’s world are both simple and beautiful. Reminiscent of old children’s books, the hand-drawn style is easy on the eyes, which can throw us into a loop as the story is fairly dark. While you can certainly enjoy the graphics playing in handheld mode, playing it docked really shows us how beautiful the illustrations are. In particular, the city of Wunderhorn has some stunning lighting effects.
Despite Anna’s Quest not necessarily bringing anything new to the point and click genre, it fully makes up for it in the story, acting, and characterization. You’ll definitely enjoy playing through this title if you like dark fairy tales or stories from the Brothers Grimm. It’s a bittersweet tale of a coming of age story as Anna goes from a timid young girl to a confident and strong young lady. Her journey isn’t easy, but it sure is worth experiencing.
*** Nintendo Switch code provided by the publisher***
• Fantastically written story
• Beautiful hand-drawn illustration
• Wonderful cast of characters
• Run of the mill point-and-click
• Controls are a bit clunky
• Can be difficult selecting objects