Reviews - Updated on April 16, 2022

Relevant for the platform: XBOXSX

Publisher Annapurna Interactive has long been associated with unusual, somewhat art-house games, both deep and not too long. Often they talk about someone’s memories: sometimes they turn out to be masterpieces like What Remains of Edith Finch, and sometimes they turn out to be banal, like Maquette. You can’t exactly call the new A Memoir Blue a passerby — these are the releases from Annapurna that you want to see all the time.

How in the spirit

The history of A Memoir Blue is rather unusual. The creative director of the project, Shelley Chen, wanted to create a game dedicated to her journey with her mother many years ago, and called her to clarify some details. The conversation turned out to be frank, and the mother admitted that in fact it was not a fun trip, but an escape, an attempt to save her daughter from her tyrant father.

A Memoir Blue: Review

The heroine has a lot of medals and cups.

So the game is autobiographical, only instead of Shelly Chen we control a girl named Miriam. Hearing a familiar song, the heroine indulges in memories and is transferred to a time when she was very young. We have to go through several episodes from her life with her, including the one in which Miriam left home with her mother.

The developers call the project an interactive poem, and this definition perfectly describes the game. This is a set of scenes that either smoothly flow into one another, or are separated by loading screens. Everything is decorated very stylishly, it is difficult to take your eyes off the screen, but the most interesting solution seems to be the symbiosis of 2D and 3D. The whole environment is three-dimensional, including the main character. But her childhood version, as well as her mother, are two-dimensional characters animated in the spirit of old Disney cartoons. Looks weird and cute.

A Memoir Blue: Review

2D models fit into 3D environments surprisingly well.

In addition to these scenes, A Memoir Blue has plenty of other original moments. The developers obviously tried to make each episode unique – some of them are not very impressive, but some are very memorable. Often they are connected with the main activity of the heroine: Miriam is a swimmer, so she spends a lot of time under water (without a mask, because these are memories), and on land, water becomes a kind of symbol. For example, there is a wonderful scene where the player drips onto a newspaper, developing an image on it.

Clicks and emotions

About such moments and consists of gameplay. It’s not a walking simulator, but it’s not a full point-and-click either. When the cinematic frames above and below disappear, the task is to interact with some object using the cursor. Move something, press something. There is no text in the game at all, but it is almost always obvious what is required of you. You see the lever – you probably need to pull it. Opened the garage, in which the light is off – without hesitation you press the light bulb.

A Memoir Blue: Review

Fish are also not just constantly caught by the eye.

It makes no sense to poke at everything – next to the necessary items, the cursor changes its appearance a little. Plus, there are optional objects that are not needed to progress through the story, but are only suitable for obtaining achievements. You don’t look for the next target for more than ten seconds, so you enjoy the story without unnecessary pauses. At the same time, there are two problems with this. Firstly, the gameplay is too easy, and secondly, the passage takes no more than an hour.

Cursor control is not satisfactory when using a gamepad.

Because of this, there may be a feeling that the story is untold in places, some points in it are not fully disclosed. However, it didn’t seem so to me – what was left behind the scenes can be thought out, and extra episodes could break the pace of the story. A Memoir Blue fully conveys the experiences of both mother and daughter, successfully doing this with the help of both gameplay and stylistic decisions. And it all ends with such a beautiful ending that tears flow in a stream. In many ways, this is the merit of the musical accompaniment – the compositions played on classical instruments are brilliantly selected.

The reason why independent games will never disappear is because of the ability of their creators to tell personal stories. It is unlikely that the creative director came up with a tearful bike – there is no reason not to believe her. Thanks to how beautifully and skillfully the authors retell this story in a game format, A Memoir Blue remains in memory for a long time and deserves praise.

Pros: great visual style with several original solutions; excellent pace of the story; a wonderful soundtrack, perfectly matched for each scene; heartbreaking finale.

Cons: the gameplay is rustic; passage takes less than an hour.

Similar content:

Heroine Anthem Zero 2: Scalescars Oath Review & Guide

Reviews • 25/03/2022

Actual for the platform: PC Main Content Erotica, humor, anime and sacrifice Cat girl, runes and birds It would seem that what is needed ...

Patrick’s Parabox: Review

Reviews • 15/04/2022

An important part of the gameplay of many puzzles is the movement of objects. It can be words, like in Baba Is You, or ...

Cloudpunk: City of Ghosts Review & Guide

Reviews • 01/04/2022

Amazingly beautiful and truly cyberpunk, Cloudpunk has received a major addition City of Ghosts, which is designed to end the story of Rania, a ...

Omensight Review

Reviews • 12/04/2022

Do you like works about the end of the world? What about detective stories with murder investigations? What about time travel with the ability ...