Chicory: A Colorful Tale – the upcoming adventure game from Greg Lobanov (Wandersong, Coin Crypt) – drops us into a beautiful world of endless colour. A magical place of dreamy art and hues galore. The world is so beautiful thanks to The Brush – a magical artifact that colours the world. Passed from wielder to wielder, it currently rests with Chicory. She’s a beloved artist who has made the world a beautiful place and you, lucky player, are in the lucky position of being her faithful custodian and biggest fan!
Or… you are until the fateful day when something strange happens. Suddenly, with a rumble, all the colour in the world disappears. Even worse, Chicory is nowhere to be found. Only her brush lies in the hallway, ready for a hero to pick it up. You can totally do it, right? Grab the brush and prepare yourself for a grand adventure – it’s time to figure out what’s going on and save the day! Along the way you’ll meet a wonderful cast of creatures, and discover that maybe there’s something spookier going on than you thought…
First up, Chicory’s art and music will likely blow you away, but if you take a look at the game credits, that should be no surprise. I commented on the great soundtrack even before discovering Lena Raine is behind it (Attack on Tarir from Guild Wars 2 is still one of my favourite gaming tracks of all time). Chicory also features sound design by Em Halberstadt (whose resume includes Night in the Woods and Wandersong). The art was so lovely that I was surprised to see this is the character designer’s first game project, but the gorgeous environments and imaginative characters brought to life by Alexis Dean-Jones and Madeline Berger are going to be worth getting lost in.
Chicory is beautiful during the colour scenes, but the stripped down colouring-book aesthetic is way more charming and enjoyable than I’d have expected. It’s a wonderful little canvas for your brush, and you’ll slowly learn more and more about how to colour it. Change your colour, change your brush size… figure out how colours affect the world around you and you’ll figure out how to move forward. You’ll also find fun new outfits along the way, which you can colour as you please!
Had I not played the demo, I might have thought Chicory was a fairly simple colouring game… imagine my surprise when suddenly I found myself in a boss fight! From the calmer puzzle solving stages, to the actual battling, Chicory’s mechanics are absolutely wonderful. Paint might make a tree shrink so you can walk past it, or grow so that you can cross over it. Battling felt fairly seamless, and I enjoyed the switch-up to action quite a bit. It reminded me of games like Undertale, which manage to balance the calm and the chaos while you try to make sense of your new world. Surprisingly, fighting a boss with only a paintbrush isn’t as hard as you might expect – it was actually pretty fun.
If you’re interested in Chicory, you still have until September 14th to back it on Kickstarter. I honestly think this one will be a fantastic hit and a lot of fun. Not able to back it but want to keep an eye out? Wishlist Chicory on Steam!