Reviews

Unravel Two review – Yarning Around

One assumes that my valiant readers caught Electronic Arts’ E3 2018 conference? Coldwood Interactives’ latest venture into platform puzzling was one of the biggest surprises of the event. The extra shocker was that Unravel Two was announced and released digitally there and then!

Unravel Two is the second in a series of Yarny based adventures (Yarnys being the cute as hell protagonists in-game). The major selling point for this title was two player couch co-op play, readers of this writers generation will remember the golden years of this feature. Unravel Two is one of the most delightful cognitive exercises in gaming right now.

Symbolic Knitting

Set against a backdrop of two blurry teenage companions working together to avoid the evils of the world, Red and Blue Yarny work together to navigate various obstacles and challenges that lie in their wake. One has to admire the emotional perception of Unravel Two; separate entities meeting together from two different realms to aid one another are amazing symbolisms of how our actions can echo into others lives.

“Pivot…… PIVOT!”

This writer has gone deep enough into that, let’s talk gameplay. Our protagonists are attached by a string of yarn which makes for some amazing gameplay mechanics. During the opening of the game there is an element of handholding in which the game teaches you all the different techniques that can be used by the Yarnys, which isn’t a bad thing. Coldwood have taken great care not to throw players in at the deep end, the learning curve is a few minutes at best. The end result of this hand holding is releasing players urges to just swing through parts of levels and puzzle solve that little bit quicker.

Yarning Around

The level design is out of this world and often stumped this games writer. However, at no time did one wish to rage quit and come back later either. Unravel Two has that player buy in; by keeping the grind on puzzles, the game provides logical and uncomplicated recoveries from falls and general player mess ups. If our protagonists do die whilst hopping, jumping and swinging around levels, checkpoints are very fair and get players back into the action ASAP.

Sometimes players may have to navigate a Yarny over a platform so that a loop is formed and provides a path to said platform a little later. Yarnies can even combine to make platforming sections a little easier. On the flipside, Yarnies can then separate at anytime including whilst climbing. Yarnies also hold player commands when switching out such as holding onto a thread of yarn or keeping a pipe from rolling away, one cringes at the thought of this option not being in place.

“Sometimes there’s something fishy about the platforming elements…”

One feature of our protagonists’ teamwork that went down a treat for this reviewer was being able to use one Yarny as an Anchor for the other to pivot from during swings, and then swapping the process around. The synergy Unravel Twos gameplay holds is magnificent. One had a catch up with one of my brothers in arms whilst reviewing, once he got the basics down we just worked together and predicted each other’s moves and ideas with little communication. Come to think of it, it wasn’t much of a catch up to be honest.

Low Key Hypnosis.

As is the standard with EA published and created titles, the graphics and fidelity in game is amazing. This writer reviewed on his PlayStation 4 Pro of which the extra horse power was certainly used. Textures popped and environmental SFX such as fog, smoke and relative lightning didn’t affect frame rate at all. Unravel Two is a completely polished experience top to bottom, not one bug was picked up on during this review.

The soundtrack is almost hypnotic, syncing up with Unravel Twos amazing take on puzzle solving superbly. Not one major note is featured throughout; everything is all tied into a nice low key package that soothes the senses. Maximum chill unlocked. SFX there isn’t really much to speak of, again it’s all very subtle and designed to not distract from Unravel Twos gameplay elements.

“Because PlayStation 4 Pro, that’s why”

Verdict:

Graphics and Presentation: 4.9

Gameplay: 4.9

Sound: 4

Overall Score: 4.6/5

Unravel Two is the Co Op Platform Puzzler to beat for 2018. It is a seamless and polished experience right down to its core values which is worn on its sleeve. Just don’t invite a friend round who you fancy talking too much, learn from this writers mistakes readers.

Formats: PlayStation 4 Pro (Reviewed), Xbox One and PC

Price: £15.99

Publisher: Coldwood Interactive

Developer: Electronic Arts

Release Date: 09/06/2018

Age Rating: PEGI 7+

Review copy provided by publisher

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