The Plucky Squire: when a fairytale is our best reality

The Plucky Squire: when a fairytale is our best reality

The Plucky Squire

It tells of a story, which took place not so long ago, where its protagonist is a fearless squire named Pennino, a sweet and lively child who dreams of fairy tales and a world of games. As with many pencils, pens, tins and talking bears, his story is told for us in The Plucky Squire, developed by All Possible Futures and shown tonight at the Devolver Digital Summer Showcase 2022, the event dedicated to all the productions of the US publisher. , famous for the publication of works such as Carrion, In Loop Hero and My Friend Pedro.

It is an independent video game that casts a glow of fantasy capable of illuminating even the darkest and most gloomy darkness, while the bright colors take full possession of the book that opens for us to tell us plots and mysteries of great authorial significance. It is no mystery that Devolver Digital, focusing on this project, has decided to rely on a classic and authorial cut to propose a colorful world enclosed in a child's room.

We have seen settings, worlds and places many in the course of our career as players. Many of them have been able to involve us, becoming an integral part of the journey, proposing themselves and interfacing with a very large slice of the public. Take It Takes Two as an example, which in order to tell a story made us impersonate the quarrelsome newlyweds Cody and May in one of the most significant cooperative experiences of recent years.

As we explored the imaginative world of Josef Fares and sewed the their relationship, we traveled to a fantasy world that we had only seen In Alice Madness Returns. On the other hand, fairy tales and fables always know how to tell stories, expressing through their nuances how strange life is.| ); }

Inside Sam's room: how to become a child again

It is no coincidence that these stories always start from a child's bedroom, as if inside there was a world to explore. As if, suddenly, Peter Pan could take us from it, taking us well beyond the second star on the right. In front we have a closed door with the Devolver Digital logo and symbols that chase away unwanted guests, similar to the labels we used to indirectly tell our parents not to disturb us. Yet, for us that red door opens, as if there were no secrets between us and the video game, as if we were intermediaries between Sam and Nib, while those talking puppets, pencils and school cases welcome us. br>
What struck us in the trailer, as we were welcomed inside, were the objects placed around the bedroom. They tell the everyday life of a child, as it is normal to be, with his games and his dreams coming true while the rest of the world proceeds at a frenetic pace, not giving hopes the space and time they deserve. Suddenly the camera moves to a book, which opens once we get close to its binding, showing Nib armed with a sword and courage as he faces creatures of all sorts, crossing at a rapid pace the yellowed pages of him. At the same time, the adventure opens up in different scenarios just like a book, making itself felt as the protagonists of the stories of Brandon Sanderson and James Barrie, while the drawings immerse us in the wildest imagination.

How strange is fantasy, but how wonderful are the video games that treat it by focusing on our childish memories, trying to awaken those memories that have an intense and particular meaning.

It is what we tried seeing the one and a half minute trailer of the game while we were analyzing it, realizing that this story does not seem to be content with outlining a story with excellent premises, but to let us live it as if inside there was that fairy tale that has long been in the drawer and that now, eager to go out to amaze the world, she intended to surprise us in the same way, with the tones and cut of those who want to tell the imagination in all its nuances.

If we think about it, the power of colors is what makes a videogame work enjoyable. to the eyes as to the spirit of those who live it. This set of elements could make The Plucky Squire a much more detailed video game than what it shows in its trailer, because it embraces a playful and lively style that tells the fantasy in its entirety, with the theme - by now fundamental - of the book that becomes the nerve center of the story in which the adventures of Nib take shape.

The world in a book

The world is in a book, literally, and that of The Plucky Squire seems to change little by little that progresses in the gaming experience. It is a bit of an allegory, if we think about it, typical of fantasy: if the scales of Harry Potter change and we have to be careful when they do, this video game goes from two-dimensional to three-dimensional graphics. It is the most enjoyable thing about the game, when we consider the various ways of approaching the gameplay which, in turn, could represent a welcome and unexpected surprise for all those who are looking for a meaningful and memorable experience.

Plus, the gameplay is artfully crafted: fantasy feels like the beating heart of the experience and is aimed at those who should try a little more to be happier. However, what fits faithfully into what appears to be a convincing and varied play structure is his way of proposing himself, as if unexpected and frightening enemies sprouted from those pages at any moment.

While watching the trailer, we noticed a despicable bear that Nib was beating up with boxing gloves, and then facing enemies with sword in hand, like a fearless warrior.

Then we are found in a small town with an isometric view that we explored far and wide as we realized how much a precise vision stood out in front of us, made up of courageous choices by the development studio. Variety in gameplay is difficult to achieve if you don't have in-depth knowledge of game design and a broad video game culture.

Apparently All Possible Futures has decided to take a big risk by diversifying gameplay actions and uniting them into a grand whole to arrive at what could be an ultimate goal with a great personality. But in addition to the empty pages to fill with our story, the reflections and memories that suddenly awoke while we watched The Plucky Squire, absorbing it as the most overwhelming emotion is sucked in, we realized that the settings, definitely fabulous and imaginative , they could prove to be much more than they seem.

It is certainly impossible to remain impassive in front of a castle made up of colored pencils, as it is not to get involved in fighting or game puzzles, which if well congenital to the inside the production could support its playful structure. In the trailer all of this is shown to awaken the viewer's imagination, as well as to allow him to immerse himself in this journey into fantasy.

While the development team seems not to be afraid to take risks, on the other hand 'is a video game that, on balance, puts the player and his emotions at the center, as if what opens in front of you were nothing more than a way like any other to read a story and make it your own.

Maybe we need stories like this, stories that don't intimidate and don't give too much information. Maybe we need simplicity, a good story and a book to be happy. And if it's virtual, like that of The Plucky Squire, even better.

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