“No girl will sleep without her Teddy Bear”
Just recently we did the review of the predecessor of this game. That one was a really cute point-and-click adventure with musical puzzles that resemble that retro glory from LucasArts called “Loom”. If we decide to go on a journey for the influences of this beautiful sequel I can name two on the top of my head right now:
The first one is Phil Fish’s one hit wonder: Fez. The visual style of Finding Teddy 2 is so very close to the Canadian creation that hurts (but in a good way, like those places where leather girls… I SAID TOO MUCH). Is not only the pixel-art stuff, is the way the style makes a communion with the backgrounds, with the environmental sounds and music, and with you. Is not that the experience makes you think that you are inside the game, but it drags you into the half cozy, half sinister world it was shaped.
The other one is a particularly loved by billions of people (unlike Phil Fish) and is the glorious “Legend of Zelda: Adventure of Link”. This 1987 Nintendo hit for FAMICOM introduced a visual aspect that changed the one from the original cartridge. When you enter a specific area, the game switched to side scrolling and platforming parts like Super Mario but maintaining the RPG elements. This was a rather new approach to the genre and not many followed. In those old 8 bits and 16 bits eras, RPG’s where almost completely developed in top-down view. Nevertheless, was an original move, and it certainly seems that StoryBird wanted to capture that feeling.
Finding Teddy 2
Well, the story is not clear in this sequel. Tarrant, the girl protagonist is playing a videogame in her room when suddenly the TV and lights turn off. You get a blade and a shield from a chest and go through a series of rooms until you get the basement and you find a Teddy Bear floating in the air. Well shit. The Teddy Bear follows you and you start your quest for whatever reason. First stage is the cemetery where you learn your basics. Jumping, attacking, and running. Now, here is where it gets tricky. I started playing the game with keyboard and mouse. I never found the key to jump, nor the way to bind it, so I got stuck behind a lump on the road. Bummer. If there’s a way to configure the keyboard I would really love to know it. Options menu resembles very much the ones of retro games and the selections are minimal. Gladly, I have an XBox controller that worked just fine at the moment of plugin. The game admits PS3 and PS4 controllers too.
After a few platforming elements that include the beating of a few cemetery monsters and chests openings that give you important runes (necessary for advancing), I arrived against a flying creature that laugh at me and winged inside a Library. Now, this scenario was wonderful. The place very mazy and full of doors, presented rooms stacked with shelves with books, burning candles, tables with abandoned chairs and the first puzzle of the game. I spent almost an hour trying to figure out the thing. I yell. I cursed. I hit the table. I travelled through all the stage all over again. Eventually, I discovered what the deal was and went on. By that time I completely hated the music. The most beautiful (and relevant) aspect of the game. Kind of a downer. But, hell, if any retro gamer comes to me and with a whiny little voice tells me: “Games are just no hard anymore”, I will break his head with a copy of Finding Teddy 2.
First of all: no map. So yeah, you are pretty much a wanderer. Feel free to roam. You’ll be doing a lot of that.
Second: no explanation. OF NOTHING. You get an item, an important one (like an old book). No clue or hint of any kind will be thrown at you. You’ll just have to realize it for yourself. Have fun.
The game is a fair challenge that will take you in the midst of twenty hours to finish, maybe more if you want to unlock all the achievements (there are 60). Is a truly good number considering a lot of other games out there. Tarrant is a cute girl and the new design, paying homage to Link (well… a “Rule 63” Link), really pays off. The visual aspect is amazing, and the music, so important to Finding Teddy’s saga couldn’t be left behind. It plays superbly with the moments of the game hitting the tone and changing the style from dreamy stuff to sinister, to platformer type. It comes included with the Steam Version (you can find it in the local files folder).
Overall, I recommend the game. It’s not an RPG while it uses elements of the genre. It’s a side scroll metroidvania with awesome visual style, wonderful music, and some very difficult puzzles.