Monday, February 15, 2016

VGR Gravity Falls Legend of the Gnome Gemulets

VGR: Gravity Falls Legend of the Gnome Gemulets aka Gravity Falls (Game) or Gravity Falls (2015)
From Ubisoft Osaka/Ubisoft San Francisco/Ubisoft/Access Games/Disney Interactive Studios
Played on Nintendo 3DS
Also available on /

Type Sidescroller Adventure/Action-RPG/Platformer
Year 2015

So, Gravity Falls' coming to an end, heh? How about that!

In its short life's span, the show has become a huge success with children and adult alike. There's also been all kind of toys, plush and other merchandising items. Strangely, this marks the first and only game to date.

I mean, sure there's been already a few flash games on Disney's website. But this was the first proper retail game.

Gravity Falls Legend of the Gnome Gemulets was developed in conjunction between Ubisoft Osaka and Ubisoft San Francisco for the Nintendo 3DS. With supervision from series creator Alex Hirsch!

It was released for around Halloween 2015. That's right, it's relatively recent but with the show's ending tomorrow it's kind of appropriate timing.

One last trip to Gravity Falls.

Instead of a simple tie-in game, the game offers a full sideplot original story. The game seems to take place early on during the last season.

The story sees the return of Jeff the Gnome asking for the help of our "mystery twins", Dipper and Mabel Pines. You see, he lost these magical Gnome "gemulets". And now it's up to you to help him out find those gems back. Don't worry, there will be plenty of Gnome gold as a reward!

So now Dipper and Mabel are running all over town - inside the caves, around the lake, etc. - looking for these gemulets. Along the way they will have to battle these gemulet guardians, protector of those stones! But as the game progresses the full story is slowly revealed, and things might not be what they appear to be...

During this story you will meet and interact with different characters, such as Grunkle Stan who literally steals the show, Soos and Wendy Corduroy! Plus several other familiar faces can be found around the town like Shmebulock, Pacifica, Candy, Grenda and even Waddles!

The gameplay is surprisingly simple but perfectly suited for the game.

In this way the game is pretty reminiscent of Adventure Time: Hey Ice King! Why'd you steal our garbage. Which also reminded me of the old Tomba! games back on the PSX. It's a platformer with a big emphasis on exploration/light-action RPG elements.

It's a sidescroller. You control both Dipper and Mabel, you can switch back and forth.

Each one has their one abilities. Dipper is better suited for close combat, armed with his Gnome Battlecuffs. He also has a flashlight he can use to light some darker places. Mabel has her grappling hook and she can perform long-rage attacks with a magical sweater!

Throughout the game you will obtain some new abilities through Soos. Or go to the junkyard to buy upgrades from Old Man McGucket!

All your quests, clues, items and treasures will get written inside the "Journal #3", along a bestiary you will unlock page after page.

Legend of the Gnome Gemulets runs on the "Rayman Origins engine", UbiArt Framework. Which was developed to help developers work with animated 2D vector art and produce gorgeous HD hand-drawn animated games. It has been used for games such as Rayman Legends, Child of Light and Valiant Hearts.

Simply put, it's a gorgeous-looking game. 

Gravity Falls looks incredible. The Mystery Shack never looked better! They put a ton of details inside all these gorgeous backgrounds. All lovely animated with many little elements to make this game true experience faithful to the show. 

It's so fun to watch Wendy's family fishing in the background on the lake!

The heart of the game are simply the dialogues, too bad the game's not actually voiced. All the dialogues are just hilarious, they totally capture the tone of the show.

Don't expect a fast-paced arcade-style platformer like Rayman, it's kind of slower with more emphasis on exploration inside these big maze-like levels. It's all about doing all these quests and collecting items around the town of Gravity Falls. It also involves a lot of back-tracking around town, specially for the final chapter of the game.

If you really into Gravity Falls, there's plenty of references and allusions to the series as well some new content showing some light on a few points from the show. 

There's even all these cryptograms like in the show throughout the game, hiding secret messages in plain sight.

You get a lot of fun revelations for the series as a whole, like the true reason the gnomes were looking for a queen when they kidnapped Mabel, how Stan was present at the birth of the twins and how Bill has been secretly planning the end of the world for centuries!

Legend of the Gnome Gemulets has a fantastic story, with really great dialogues thanks to the involvement of Alex Hirsch in the development of the game. With great art, design and animations!

It's a pretty decent adaptation, if I have one real complaint it's how easy and pretty short the adventure is. There's just not enough locations to visit in my opinion. It feels a bit rushed in that aspect (and I truly believed we would explore the entire town of Gravity Falls, there's a huge missing chunk on the main map you never get to explore..).

Finally one special mention for the music in the game, which was absolutely phenomenal and in true fashion to the show! Play this one with the sound turned all up or with a good headset! These musics are really fun and catchy!

Overall, Gravity Falls Legend of the Gnome Gemulets is a really gorgeous and fun looking game!

It was a really fun enjoyable game! The controls were top notch. The only real problem I had with the game is how short it was on replayability.

Try it out! If like me you're a huge fan of the show or looking for more Gravity Falls - specially after the series finale - then this game is for you!
I give it:
2 / 3 Murrays!

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