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An Adventure into the Unseen: The Vale: Shadow of the Crown Review


Title text that says The Vale Shadow of The Crown with the protagonist Alex stood on a hill with mountains in the backgroundl

Image: Falling Squirrel


Hello, fellow gaming enthusiasts! Today, we journey into a world where sight takes a backseat, and sound steers the narrative - The Vale: Shadow of the Crown. Developed by Falling Squirrel, this game introduces us to a unique perspective in the gaming realm. But is this innovative approach worth the investment? Let's explore it in this The Vale: Shadow of the Crown review.


 

Gameplay (9/10)


The Vale takes a bold step in an unfamiliar direction by focusing on audio over visuals. You assume the role of a visually impaired protagonist Alex, a royal who's been sent away to live on the outskirts of the kingdom. The gameplay is based around audio cues, haptic feedback, and careful listening - a refreshing and challenging approach that's a standout feature of The Vale. I wore a sleep mask over my eyes and surround sound headphones for the best experience and the game took me to a different world.

Combat is surprisingly complex and satisfying, relying on the sounds of approaching enemies and their attacks to time your blocks, parries, and counters. However, this mechanic may prove challenging for players used to more traditional visual cues.


 

Story and Characters (8/10)


The narrative in The Vale is compelling, carrying you along a richly detailed story of political intrigue, unexpected friendships, and dangerous adversaries. The plot unveils itself through beautifully crafted dialogue and ambient sounds, immersing you in the world in a way that is both unique and engaging.


Character development is a strong point in The Vale, with the protagonist's growth mirrored by the player's increasing mastery of the game's unique mechanics. The characters you encounter along the journey are well-realized and contribute to a multifaceted narrative.


 

Audio Design (10/10)


Audio is the heart and soul of The Vale, and it absolutely shines. The voice acting is top-notch, bringing the characters to life, and the ambient sounds create a vivid world that envelops you completely. The sound design is so detailed and carefully implemented that you can almost "see" the game through your ears.


 

Conclusion


In a nutshell, The Vale: Shadow of the Crown is an innovative and daring game that takes a bold step forward in pushing the boundaries of gaming. Its reliance on audio over visuals, while challenging, provides an immersive and rewarding gameplay experience and places you in the shoes of someone with a different perspective on life. The captivating narrative, well-developed characters, and stunning audio design create an engaging world that will hold you from start to finish.

Though it might initially prove a bit difficult for those used to traditional gaming mechanics, The Vale is a unique gem that offers an experience like no other. It's an exceptional testament to how game developers can innovatively use audio to provide immersive gaming experiences and an amazing movement in accessible gaming.


Overall Score: 9/10

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