Crow is an ambitious new action/adventure flying title from Sunside Games, mixing some serious technical prowess with a mythology-inspired tale. It’s essentially two games at the same time: half exploratory adventure, and half action/RPG hybrid. It’s not perfect, but it’s certainly one of the most engaging, unique titles we’ve seen in the App Store.
One thing is obvious when firing up Crow for the first time: the game is beautiful, with gorgeous lighting effects and awe-inducing world designs. Combined with the wonderfully-orchestrated music, Crow is hands down one of the most visually immersive titles in the App Store to date.
The game’s story attempts to match the game’s look and sound of “epicness”, inspired by various ideologies and mythologies, framed around the story of a crow fighting for its soul. Unfortunately, it’s a bit transparent, especially in the beginning, and there are times where events and narration occur at random, and doesn’t always feel like a completely coherent experience.
There are two different ways to play Crow: the core of the game are spent exploring areas, looking for different objects and uncovering plot progressions, eventually leading to the action-based boss levels. Sometimes I’d find myself wandering around, just admiring the landscape as my crow slowly flew around, although other times I’d be flying around in circles trying to figure out where I needed to go next.
Each area is finished with an on-rails boss battle against another winged species, integrating swipe attacks and defense moves – which can be upgraded as the game progresses. What’s really interesting is the ability to save or destroy bosses after defeating them, which plays into the eventual fate of the black-feather protagonist.
At times the game’s story and different gameplay sections feel a bit disconnected, but for such an ambitious title technically and story-wise, Crow’s positives far outweigh the small execution issues. Anyone looking for a graphically impressive, mysterious title should really go grab a copy, and prepare to be impressed.