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Gaming,  Other

Alba game review

Hello friends!! Welcome to today’s video game review of Alba!!

Alba is an adorable game about conservation where you play as a child visiting their grandparents on an island. Your grandfather is an avid birdwatcher, and he and your grandmother encourage you to scout the local wildlife and “collect” photos of them. While you’re taking photos of wildlife, you will also get opportunities to help the townsfolk, clean the island, and save the animals.

If you’re interested in other cozy games I have reviewed, please click here for the Gaming reviews section on my blog. Annnnd, once I figure out how to stream my Switch, you will be able to watch me play at my Twitch account: Meeghan games (at least the branding is consistent, if not creative!)

Anyway, let’s have a look at the game Alba!!

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Alba game review

Alba title screen, by ustwo

Title: Alba
Developer: ustwo games
Release date: 11 Dec 2020
Players: 1 (single player only)
Platforms: Nintendo Switch, PS5, PS4, Xbox One, Xbox series X, WindowsOS, MacOS, iOS
Genre: Adventure, Simulation, Role-Playing, Puzzle/Collecting, Indie
Steam link

Alba: A wildlife adventure

From the BAFTA-Award winning studio behind Monument Valley and Assemble with Care comes something entirely new.

Join Alba as she visits her grandparents on a Mediterranean island. She is ready for a peaceful summer of wildlife exploration with her friend Ines, but when she sees an animal in danger, she realises she needs to do something about it.

This is truly a Mediterranean paradise if you ignore all the litter! From the idyllic beaches to the ancient castle overlooking the town a whole island is ready to be explored. With Ines and your grandfather  who is a total bird nerd  by your side, you can start the movement to save the island. Maybe even the world after that.

Steam

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my thoughts

If I was to categorise this game as a book (yeah we’re doing this again), it would be a middle grade graphic novel about saving the environment and taking a stand against oil-spilling nasty conglomerates. Which is quite specific. But also, completely worth the time to read. Or in this case, play.

As I mentioned above, you play as a young child who is encouraged by their grandparents to run around this island and take photos of wildlife. Along the way you obtain other items like a recycling bag to pick up rubbish, a first aid kit to help injured animals, and a toolbox to fix things. You’re also attempting to stop a big business come and build a luxury hotel on a nature reserve. With the help of some locals, of course. The story is simple but also very sweet.

The controller mechanics are super easy (like, when I say this is a middle-grade game, you could easily give it to a 10-year-old), as it’s very much a point and click style game. Even on Switch the buttons are basic and make sense (and you can invert the Y-axis if required).

In terms of the characters, they are sweet and they are all interactable including the island’s resident dog. Unfortunately the same can’t be said of the local cats as they are treated more like wildlife.

And the art… *chefs kiss!* The characters, the wildlife and the scenery are just breathtaking. In fact, I highly recommend finding each of the ‘sitting areas’ and just absorbing the art for a few moments. Well worth the time.

The only downside I found was that a lot of the birds tend to look the same, particularly the common ones. I think there’s about seven types of seagull. You’ll need to keep your camera out and scanning constantly until you collect them all. But it’s super easy to check what you have collected and from where on the island.

Alba is absolutely adorable, and I’m not going to get over it. It’s about four hours worth of game play, and is currently on sale on the Nintendo Switch store and Steam. I would say it is amazing value for money right now. And I say that as someone who is currently off work and bored out of my mind. (You’re all going to get a lot of game reviews in the next couple of weeks, because I have been bored-spending…)

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Have you played the game, Alba?

until next time, happy reading! Meeghan xo

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