FULL REVIEW: Weird, wonderful, whimsical, world to make you wide-eyed and warm inside
If there is any game to put a smile on your face and make you feel warm inside, it is TOHU. From the gorgeous art style to the phenomenal soundtrack, you will not be disappointed
Make a hot chocolate with marshmellows, whipped cream, sprinkles, and sit by the cosy fire. Thats TOHU
Splendid, Short and Sweet
I love absolutely everything about TOHU, get ready to read an entire review of me gushing over it. I lie, there is one complaint I have- It was too short. I finished the story in one sitting, taking just under 4hrs, although I’ve seen some people take as little as 2hrs.
Our protagonist is simply named 'The Girl'. Tasked to fix the Sacred Engine and save the Fish Planets from... Destruction? It’s not explicitly explained what happens if all goes wrong, but it is bad, you can be confident of that. So you go round the different Fish Planets, collecting totems to finish your quest and defeat the dark-robed villain.
I wanted to live in this world a while longer, but all good things come to an end, right? I guess they call it short and sweet for a reason- not long and sweet.
The story is a little bit nonsensical, and that fits with all the characters you meet along the way. Every one of them is memorable in design and in the strange tasks they have you do. Oh, how I wish there were more to explore and see.
Positively Pretty Puzzles
Labelled as a poin’n’click game, and yes, there is pointing and clicking, but I feel this is more at home as a Puzzle Adventure. You won’t find the usual mechanics of combining items or the protagonist giving a witty quip of dialogue to describe something.
In TOHU, if you can’t interact with something, she gives an adorable shrug and “hmm”, then playfully skips away to the next item you click on.
Everything about the gameplay is very playful and fun. As well as the puzzles, there are cute creatures you can click on that squeak and then drawn into a notebook. It makes you feel like a kid again. Also, if you stay idle too long, a portable console is pulled out, and ‘The Girl’ entertains herself.
Let’s talk about the puzzles, I’ve been here singing praise for everything and have not mentioned the one thing- gameplay. The puzzles range from very easy to some real headscratchers. There is also a variety in the types of puzzles, showing off the developers creativity. You may be piecing a mirror together one moment, and then playing whack-a-mole at another moment.
Occasionally, a puzzle would leave me stumped, but if you pull out that portable console she plays with, you’ll find that you can unlock hints. These hints are hidden behind- yet another puzzle. It’s an easy one, don’t worry. Once you have unlocked your hints, they are presented to you in picture form, never truly giving you the complete answer. I love this. Rather than giving it away like so many other games, they turned the hint system into a little puzzle of its own to solve.
Colourful Charming Cute Chorus
I have barely left any room to talk about how much I love the art and music. But do I need to say much? Look at the artwork. I have it decorated throughout this magazine, on the cover and in this article. A picture speaks a thousand words, my friend, and all of those words are shouting how wonderfully, beautiful this is. I only wish I could also douse your ears with the soundtrack. Composed by Christopher Larkin, best known for Hollow Knight. Commented on several videos and posts, I have seen people express their unwavering desire to buy TOHU because of Larkins talent alone.
Hmmm, a hard one. There is nothing new to be seen or experienced by playing it again. However, it is such a wonderful experience, I wouldn’t hesitate to do so in the future.
Final Thoughts (So Far)
Undoubtedly, a must-play. With a warning on how short the game is. Running at 2-4hrs for a full playthrough, it may turn some away. But if you do turn away, you will be missing out on what feels like a warm hug by the fire on a cold winter day. In other words, this is the experience you need.
I cannot recommend this game enough, I am still smiling, whilst thinking about it.
I thoroughly enjoyed the puzzles that, both the easy and hard ones. The art and music were an absolute delight to behold and admire. The story was silly, but charming and lovely all the same.