Aspire: Ina's Tale | Nintendo Switch Review
Aspire: Ina's Tale is a platform-puzzle game developed by Wondernaut Studio and published by Untold Tales. It is available on Windows PC, XBox, and Nintendo Switch. For the purpose of my review I was playing on the Nintendo Switch in handheld mode.
Take on the role of Ina, a young woman who was a former priestess who appears to have been taken captive within a mysterious tower where she has been asleep for quite some time in a dream-like state. Ina must learn why she’s been imprisoned in this strange place and figure out how she’s going to escape. I’ve become a bit of a sucker for these sorts of platform games with puzzle elements, particularly when they have stunning graphics and a meaningful story to carry you along on the adventure. Aspire: Ina's Tale has all of that and more so was a real treat for me. It is a wonderfully crafted and beautifully paced story of self-discovery; isolation; self-sacrifice and overcoming deeply challenging situations.
Initially I found the general progression to feel very slow when I first started out Aspire: Ina’s Tale. I felt like I’d spent a lot of time doing nothing, however I quickly realised that I had in fact been absorbed entirely by the environment and the stunning soundtrack. That alone gave me the boost I needed to persevere enough for the gameplay to speed up and the story to grip me and I’m really glad I did because what I found within Ina’s story really was something special. The puzzles were all very logical and made sense to me and didn’t require too much in terms of general skill meaning that the game was a really laid back experience which allowed me to soak up the stunning environment and story that was given to us. A lot of the early puzzles revolve around using light as both a barrier or protection and to break down certain types of walls. As you progress through the game and Ina becomes wiser and learns more powers the game builds on the variety of puzzles and incorporates all the different disciplines that you learned previously. As far as the platforming goes it wasn’t overly complex, however I found Ina’s movement to feel quite clunky at times which made areas a challenge when they shouldn’t have been. That was a very minor gripe because the overall difficulty platforming wise wasn’t too high so it remained nothing more than a minor annoyance for me rather than a game ruining frustration.
Whilst I really enjoyed Aspire; Ina’s Tale I do find that the gameplay felt like it very much took a backseat to everything else the game offered. This isn’t necessarily an outright negative thing. I just feel like there was something lacking gameplay wise and it eventually did start to feel repetitive and with a lack of any form of collectibles with other lore and such, it didn’t leave me wanting to explore much more than I had. With that said though, I did enjoy Aspire: Ina’s Tale. The environment and soundtrack were excellent and really created a beautiful atmosphere for a deep story filled with self-discovery during a pivotal life changing journey that Ina went through.
Lj's Rating: 3 orbs of light out of 5.
For more information on Aspire: Ina's Tale please use the following links...
Many thanks to Wire Tap Media for the Review Key.