exploration Indie puzzle

Animal Well Pros & Cons


  • Engaging Gameplay: “Animal Well” excels in its puzzle-platforming, providing a satisfying and solid experience as players navigate through its intriguing world. The game features a variety of gadgets and tools that enhance gameplay, making for creative and multi-use interactions throughout the adventure.
  • Atmospheric and Visually Stunning: The game’s art and audio are beautifully crafted, contributing to an atmospheric and sometimes unsettling environment. The use of lighting and visual effects, especially on higher-end displays, significantly enhances the player’s experience.
  • Rich in Secrets: There is a vast array of secrets and collectibles scattered throughout the game, which not only encourages exploration but also adds depth to the gameplay, keeping players engaged as they discover new areas and solve puzzles.
  • Non-Combat Focus: Uniquely, the game focuses on puzzle-solving and exploration rather than combat, setting it apart from typical metroidvanias. This focus leads to a more cerebral gaming experience, where strategy and timing are key.


  • Lack of Clear Direction: One of the major criticisms of “Animal Well” is its minimalistic approach to storytelling and guidance. This can sometimes leave players feeling lost or unsure of their next steps, especially without the typical narrative cues or direct gameplay instructions seen in other games.
  • Frustrating Boss Battles: Although the game generally avoids direct combat, the boss encounters can be particularly challenging and sometimes frustrating. These battles often require precise timing and strategy, which might not align with the non-combat nature of the rest of the game.
  • Game Length and Replayability: While the game can be extended significantly by those who enjoy hunting for every secret and collectible, others may find the main storyline somewhat short. Additionally, the replay value might be limited once all secrets are uncovered.

Overall, “Animal Well” offers a unique and enriching experience that pushes the boundaries of the metroidvania genre with its focus on puzzles and exploration rather than combat. However, its minimalistic approach and challenging boss fights might not appeal to everyone. If you’re a fan of meticulously designed puzzles and atmospheric games, and you don’t mind a bit of ambiguity in your gameplay, “Animal Well” could be a rewarding experience. For those seeking more direction and conventional storytelling, it might be less engaging.


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