Early Access Impressions Of Grow: Song of the Evertree
Today we’ll be talking about my recent experience checking out the upcoming game Grow: Song of the Evertree.
Thanks to the team at 505 games for sending me a preview of the game. The build is still in development, so its visuals and features are not final, but you’ll get a great sense of what to expect from this title once it releases on November 16th. I got a chance to check out the first two hours; let’s jump in.
Grow is a sandbox adventure game with various puzzles and platforming moments. It’s got a day and night cycle as well as life and town management elements.
Over time, the Worlds of Alaria faded. The Evertree – where many worlds resided on its countless branches – is now nothing more than a sapling. No one knows how to make it grow. But you are different. You hear the sun as it sings across the sky. You hear the language of rain against the earth. You are the last of the Everheart Alchemists, and it is your ancestral task and privilege to care for the Evertree.
Find unique places, as you are encouraged to explore this beautiful world at your own pace. How do you want to spend your time? Exploring caves and solving puzzles, collecting minerals and flowers, fishing or catching bugs… it’s up to you.
Now I don’t know about you, but I thought this game sounded pretty fun when I first heard that.
I jumped in, and after the initial story cutscene, my new friends Book and Coppertop greeted me. These characters help you throughout your story; Book keeps track of all your quests, challenges and stats. Coppertop helps with your alchemy.
After a brief introduction with them, it was on to customizing my character. In the typical style menu that you come to expect, you get to choose the whole manager of options, including gender, body shape, facial features, and more. I liked the array of possibilities it gave you; however, I’d have preferred to see the items rather than selecting them on a slider for things such as accessories.
In the end, I opted for the striped alchemist tights, puffy alchemist shirt, pigtail hairstyle and lots of freckles as the base appearance for my character.
Given this game is for a wide age of audiences, I liked that you can ask a book and coppertop many questions about who you are, the evertree, the song, and myora.
As you go on your adventures, you’ll meet new characters and unlock new tools to help you look after the town and world.
One of my favourite characters is the creature you meet right at the start, which I named Noodle. This beautiful creature flies you up into the evertree and back home, helping you complete your daily tasks.
Most of the daily tasks I did took part in the evertree after placing an everseed. I had the job of bringing life back into the world, and with each day, the world grew as I planted new seeds, removed stones and sang my song.
Each day comes fresh opportunities to meet new people and explore new areas. Through which you’ll gain new tools and learn how to use them, help out new friends and even somedays have people move into your town.
Placing town pieces and customizing couldn’t be easier with simple rotate and place features. You can quickly build up parts of your town, open new stores, assign people to their homes and jobs, plus so much more!
As your first town district grows in size, you’ll be able to explore other areas searching for the broken pieces of the song of myora. I spent a lot of time exploring and completing various puzzles in my session, including one in a hidden tree stump.
Up upon the evertree in the first world, you can go inside a tree stump, and in here you’ll be able to practise your fishing but also complete a ‘hide and sneak’ style puzzle in which you need to place the four items before the gate, which on competition unlocks a little treasure room.
I loved this aspect and must have run around a dozen times to find the sneaky last hidden item. It’s not limited just to hidden locations; you’ll discover dungeon mazes throughout the game and some other puzzles upon your worlds.
The art style of this game is delightful and adds to the wholesome feel, with its over and unsized elements creating a lovely mishmash of giant mushrooms and tiny town folk.
Overall I was impressed with how much they’d be able to pack into the game in terms of features and content to play whilst making it not feel overwhelming. In the early days, as the tutorial esk parts progress, it’s been well-paced, and this will help all ages get a good sense of how to play this upcoming title.
Thanks again to the team at 505 games for the chance to checkout Grow: Song of the Evertree before its release on November 16th.
Grow: Song of the Evertree
Release Date: 16 Nov, 2021
Genre: Adventure, Casual, Farming Sim, Simulation
Developer: Prideful Sloth
Publisher: 505 Games
I received 'Grow: Song of the Evertree' for free, to play and review thanks to the team who kindly gifted a Steam copy of the game.