She Remembered Caterpillars
Developed By : jumpsuit entertainment
Published By : Ysbryd Games
Category : Puzzle
Release : Mar 28, 2019
Reviewed By : Mike Benton
Once again, the puzzle area of the Switch’s library of games gets a little deeper, with the newest addition of She Remembered Caterpillars. Forget steampunk and cyberpunk, this game brings you a fungipunk world filled with colorful creatures called Gammies as well as a plethora of structures that aren’t structures at all, but caterpillars.
Our story…is honestly an element of this game that still perplexes me a bit. In the games description, you’re cryptically told that what unfolds will “appear to be one scientist’s quest to save her father”. But after having my hands in the dirt for this one, the story that’s woven seems to be a bit of column A, some of column B, and pinches from a few more columns. The narrative is told in very brief snippets, presented as text slides as you come into each level, and it’s one that isn’t really given a strong emphasis of importance.
That strong emphasis comes through full-well in She Remembered Caterpillars gameplay. You the player will be tasked with controlling the Gammies within each level. What does this entail? Each Gammie represents a different color. Throughout the levels there are different colored bridges and gates that share these same colors, as well as white webbed platforms. Your goal is to properly navigate across each of the bridges and through the gates so that all Gammies find their way to a platform.
Naturally, in a puzzle game such as this, there are rules to follow. What’s nice about this one is that it throws very few rules at you. In fact, it throws all of it’s rules at you right off the bat, and it never tweaks or complicates them. There are caterpillars that create bridges over caps, as well as paired caterpillars that create gates. These caterpillars will end up sharing colors with the Gammies that you have to control as well, and the main rules that you need to be considerate of is this : Gammies can cross same-colored bridges, but can’t pass through same-colored gates. So a red Gammie can cross a red bridge but not pass through red gates.
As far as the Gammies themselves, things start off simple with red and blue ones. After a few levels, you are taught your one special move that you have : the ability to morph two Gammies together, making a new color and allowing access (or being restricted from) extra areas. Like I said you start with red and blue, and eventually you’ll get yellow as well giving you all three primary colors and the ability to morph into all the secondary colors.
One thing that becomes very apparent, very fast in She Remembered Caterpillars is that the game stops holding your hand very quickly. And I mean extremely quickly. You meet the Gammies, you get taught about bridges and gates, then morphing, and then things ramp up real good. It seems extreme, until you take a step back and realize that the game’s description promises about 40 levels of puzzles. So it really boils down to if they don’t crank up the difficulty early…when would they? Do it too late and it almost makes no sense.
Despite the early and very blatant difficulty spike, I absolutely love this game. It’s artwork is beautiful, the music equals that beauty, and I may be a bit biased with my love for puzzle games, but I absolutely loved how this game ramps up immediately. And it’s not even in the sense of there being so many options on paths to take that it’s overwhelming. However, you will almost never load up a puzzle, look at the screen and instantly figure out “aha! I know the solution”. You’ll typically stare at it dumbfounded for a bit, then slowly realize what your last move on the puzzle needs to be and end up working backwards from there.
So if you’re a fan of puzzle games, and moreso a fan of games with beautiful visuals and sound, don’t pass on She Remembered Caterpillars. One final great thing to note about this game is the ability to still enjoy it if you happen to have any form of color-blindness, you can still fully enjoy this game. Each color is dually represented by it’s own specific shape. Red is always a square, and blue is always a circle. Furthermore, when you use the morph ability, the shapes meld together too. So when mixing these two listed shapes, the result on the back of the purple Gammie is sort of a D with one edge being flat and squared off, and the opposite side being rounded. It’s a small detail about the game but it really shows that the team at jumpsuit entertainment wanted to make sure they didn’t leave anyone out for being able to enjoy this game.