Owl Watch Review
The world is in danger in Agelvik’s Owl Watch, and it’s up to the player to save the day. This atmospheric title might pride itself on its serene atmosphere, but does its gameplay match its presentation?
Owl Watch Review
In Owl Watch, a once beautiful city has succumbed to a darkness that has wiped everything out. There is a defense mechanism that can destroy this darkness, but it needs to be activated by the Watcher. Enter your character – a Watcher that has been awoken to bring this mechanism to life and save the day.
It’s a basic tale, told briefly via moving sketches at the beginning and the end of the game. It is not something players can get overly invested in – your character doesn’t even have a name – but it is welcome nonetheless.
Taking place between three different worlds, players will activate each device by collecting crystals that are off the beaten path. These crystals can be seen right from the hub area of each world, but there are three long and winding paths that will take you there.
To get to your goal, the Watcher has a dash attack that allows him to move quickly and clear chasms. It offers a sense of speed and has little cooldown, so players can speed their way through this title through rigorous use of this mechanic. It’s not always accurate though – judging the distance between points can be tricky, and though an arrow showing the direction the Watcher is facing can be seen on the ground, precise controls are a pipe dream.
Most levels follow a winding path with some brief platforming action. One section might have a bridge out, while another has players dodging between a caravan of running wolves. The aforementioned controls make these segments harder than they have any right to be, and though there are infinite lives and little penalty for dying, it can get frustrating to do the same sections multiple times. Certain segments require the player to navigate small platforms above a bottomless pit, which works about as well as you would expect it to. The camera often works against the player as well, hiding the next point of interest and forcing players to take a leap of faith to get to their next destination.
It’s just a shame that Owl Watch has a criminally short run time. Collect the three crystals in the three different areas, and players will be able to 100% the game. We took our sweet time, and were able to finish this title in approximately 20 minutes. The lack of enemies (other than the running wolves), collectibles, story, or anything else is unfortunate.
Owl Watch provides a hollow experience when all is said and done. Its distinct low poly aesthetics stand out, but the lack of content and short length prevent this title from making any sort of impact.
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