I have never played, nor do I know anything about Ittle Dew. In fact, until a friend of mine had spoken out and introduced me to its sequel, Ittle Dew 2, I did not even know it existed. And so I began my introduction into the series. If you are curious as to how good of an introduction it was, I can gladly say I am playing the first game now and enjoying every moment of it.
Ittle Dew 2 is largely a Legend of Zelda clone. Much like Zelda, you guide a character through an isometric world in search of items, upgrades, and hearts. Rather than Link, however, you control the eponymous Ittle (or whatever you choose to rename her). Joining Ittle is her flying fox companion, Tippsie. Where the game begins separating itself from its influences is through how our intrepid heroes interact with the world. Ittle Dew 2 is not just a clone, it is a full on parody. Everything from the environments you explore to Tippsie’s crippling addiction to health potions oozes humor and wit that almost always hits. The jokes presented by the game’s narrative can be inconsistent in that some jokes require way too much thought while others are completely in your face, but you will likely always have a smile on while playing through Ittle Dew 2.
As for the actual game, players are washed up on an island and tasked with finding a way off of it. To do so they must collect the eight pieces of raft to create… well, a raft. Each piece is located within a somewhat standard dungeon. Like Zelda (see a trend?), the dungeons are broken into separate rooms that are placed in a grid-like pattern that eventually lead to a fight with one of three recurring bosses. Each dungeon usually has a theme, from the opening world’s “kid-friendly” pillow fort dungeon to a full-on art museum complete with paintings that come to life and attack you. As you progress, the difficulty of these dungeons ramps up considerably. In fact, very early on puzzles progress from being quick and easy to taking hours to solve.
These puzzles are usually of the block pushing variety. The game offers various items to the players such as magic wands and flaming swords that are all used in these puzzles, from destroying blocks to creating entirely new ones. It can actually get quite overwhelming the first time you are exposed to one of the more complicated puzzles. Fortunately, most of the most difficult puzzles are locked behind optional content so nothing will impede casual players too much. Those looking to complete the game 100%, however, are in for quite the ordeal.
Outside of dungeons and puzzles, players can explore an overworld map. I say “can” because almost nothing presented in the overworld is actually necessary to beat the game. Players can choose to just go from dungeon to dungeon ignoring all of the side content. Otherwise, there are various caves and houses throughout the island that often feature a puzzle or two to solve that will reward players with collectibles. These collectibles are used to unlock ultra-hard dungeons that usually feature upgrades to your arsenal. The game also actively encourages you to stray from the path and enter dungeons before you should. Many of the available items can be gotten early which allow you to utilize shortcuts in earlier dungeons. While an interesting idea, I never actually took advantage of this and just followed the set path.
Ultimately, Ittle Dew 2 is a very serviceable Zelda clone. If you are looking to relive the glory days of the 8-bit kings, this game is definitely a way to do so. But beyond that, Ittle Dew 2 is an incredibly charming and challenging adventure game that can keep even the most hardcore puzzlers entertained for hours on end. While it may seem a little standard or run of the mill at times, Ittle Dew 2 has a lot of heart to make up for it.
REVIEW CODE: A complimentary Microsoft Xbox One code was provided to Brash Games for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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