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Unleaving Review

Overall - 80%


Official Score

A short-but-sweet art piece, Unleaving leaves a lasting impression that truly immerses players in its artistic world. For those feeling a little lost, be sure to take this journey.

User Rating: 4.15 ( 1 votes)

An artistic journey featuring thousands of visuals, the world of orangutan matter’s Unleaving promises a world that combines puzzle platforming with hand-painted worlds. Does this narrative-driven adventure manage to immerse players into its stylized world?

Unleaving Review

Starting their journey by following a lively butterfly, Unleaving kick off with players finding themselves back at home.

From there, Unleaving has players venturing off on a journey that forces players to ponder a number of different questions: 

  • Why are you here? 
  • What do you search for? 
  • What drives you?

With nothing else to go off of, players set off across a number of different landscapes in order to shed some light on its unique world.

What follows is a 2D platformer that follows the old mantra of show, don’t tell. Though there are a number of different brief statements on the screen at any given time, players will find themselves immersed in its world throughout its approximately one hour runtime. 

This is one title where players will come to appreciate things as they come, with players grasping the significance that comes with each scenario. Whether it be rising water or a wolf, players will see the allegories to real life that come with each situation. As a result, Unleaving’s journey is truly remarkable.

On that same note, Unleaving truly excels in its worldbuilding. The hand-painted world of Unleaving is alive, one that grabs the attention of the player from the very first stroke through its constantly shifting world. In addition, there are a number of different unique elements at play, from a larger-than-life rocking horse to an electrifying robot head.

These elements also tie into Unleaving’s puzzle elements. Momentum and physics play a bit part in progression, with players dragging around boxes, dealing with antigravity factories, and other elements to get ahead. Some parts take a fair amount of time to get just right, but Unleaving is forgiving.

If anything, we appreciate the cleverness this title brings to the table – Unleaving makes sure players have the tools they need to get ahead. It might require a bit of trial and error, along with exploration, but these manage to be strengths that lead to the immersion the development team is seeking out.

On that note, while the title is a bit on the short side, it is still a worthy trip that does not overstay its welcome. It leaves a lasting impression; Unleaving is an excellent art piece that is absolutely begging to be played on the proper display with a good set of headphones.

A short-but-sweet art piece, Unleaving leaves a lasting impression that truly immerses players in its artistic world. For those feeling a little lost, be sure to take this journey.

Unleaving Review

Reviewed On: PC
Release Date: March 27, 2024
MSRP: $14.99
Platforms: PC
Developer: orangutan matter
Publisher: orangutan matter
Alternative Reviews: Softpedia, SpazioGames
Aggregate Scores: Metacritic, OpenCritic

Review Policy | Scoring Policy | Meet The Reviewer

Casey Scheld

Casey Scheld has more than 15 years of experience in the gaming industry as a community manager, social media director, event specialist, and (of course) gaming editor. He has previously worked with gaming start-ups like Raptr, publishers like Konami, and roller derby girls at PAX West (check out Jam City Rollergirls)! Gamers Heroes is a passion project for him, giving him a chance to tap into the underground side of gaming. He is all too eager to give these lesser-known heroes of the indie space the attention they so rightly deserve, seeking out the next gem and sharing it with the world. Previously making appearances at events like CES, GDC, and (the late) E3, he is all too happy to seek out the next big thing. For those that want to talk shop, send over a tip, or get an easy win in a fighting game of their choosing, be sure to check out his social media channels below.

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