A standalone release from the end of 2021, A Juggler’s Tale takes us in the short tale of being carried by a doll whose freedom is dangled by a thread. Is the game a new narrative nugget not to be missed?
The first proposal from the young German kaleidoscube team, A Juggler’s Tale is a short narrative experiment carried by Abby, a little doll trying to undo the strings holding her back to finally savor freedom. A theatrical adventure with a Burtonesque flavor that draws its core from traditional fairy tales.
doll searching for freedom
From morning to night, little Abby gets paid by a circus owner who turns her into a real fairground monster to amuse his audience. At night, the young captive dreams of a great escape from a narrow cage, close to the domesticated bear with whom she befriended. So when a problem arises, you grab it without hesitation so you can finally have a good time outside. But the outside world is hostile and many dangers must be faced. Especially since her jailers are now on her heels to bring her back to her homeland. Offscreen Jack, the puppeteer in this story, tells of Abby’s quest for freedom while holding her by the strings; An irony that necessarily arouses interest in screenwriting and makes us question the credibility of our storyteller.
The wizard’s tale here weaves a charming little epic from beginning to end. And if the featureless face of the Abby doll gives us a very impersonal feeling about the embodied character, then the narrator’s voice breathes enough life into the story. And this one overlooks the atmospheric melodies with the good vibe of the amazing tales. However, it is clear that the scenario is based on relatively general situations and that the outcome is very quickly guessed. Especially since the adventure ends with a handful of very short works that only constitute two hours of occupation at the most. Thankfully everything benefits from a fairly stable rhythm that never gets exhausted.
The first chapter of the charlatan’s tale
He has a great success theme
Abby stubbornly dashes into a safe zone, advancing through some rather nice side-scrolling panoramas, enhanced by a handful of beautiful sunsets. It seems that the characters as decorative items want to interfere with your desire to escape. Oftentimes, the challenge is to succeed in deflecting the obstacles caused by the strings holding you back. Then well-researched and highly coherent environmental puzzles arise without necessarily being difficult. However, the rest of the challenges are more summarized and less unique. It’s about jumping from one rock to another to cross the river, going silently under the noses of the guards, or operating mechanisms by throwing objects.
The manipulations in general are very easy to achieve, the correct trigger used for reaction and firing (without much possible range), and A/X button for jumping. But the ability to maneuver on the spot. Abby is rather slow, even uncomfortable to maneuver. Thus the cycle is executed with a certain lack of liquidity and can be a bit annoying. Enough to get the fun out of a few puzzles. A drawback that the experience would have been particularly enjoyable without.
- Nice story to follow
- A bunch of very beautiful decorations
- The voice of the narrator who permeates the story
- An unsurprising, very brief story (about 2 hours)
- Instead of dealing uncomfortable
- Puzzles without originality
Without showing much uniqueness, A Juggler’s Tale stands out with a beautiful atmosphere, some well-drawn sets and a set of well-researched puzzles. But the inconvenience of passing through is missing an experience that is too short and too general to really be discerned. With better handling and some extra originality, the game could have been a resounding success. Pity.
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by Traxajournalist jeuxvideo.com