The demo for My Uncle Merlin left me with a good impression. Though it was short, the writing was funny and the world weird enough to keep me interested in what was going on. I don’t tend to play a lot of games where reading is the main element of gamepley, but I enjoyed this one a whole lot.
(Please keep in mind this is a Kickstarter game by Pocket Mana. If you would like to back this game after reading our review please visit their Kickstarter page for details. As of the time of writing there are only 7 days remaining until the deadline. Pocket Mana does not endorse us in any way.)
Wizards and Weirdness and Nonsense, Oh Yea!
You play as Eddie, apprentice wizard and boy old enough to make sex jokes. One day, while having a less-than-pleasant talk with your uncle Merlin, a thief sneaks into your tower and steals the precious Purple Orb; and now your tasked with getting it back.
That’s it as far as story goes, at least in the demo. It’s enough to get things rolling, but the centerpiece of My Uncle Merlin is the world and all the strange people in it.
If I saw a reason to play My Uncle Merlin it’s for the characters; not just the main ones but the side characters also, as they end up being the active agent pulling you forward. They aren’t especially deep, but the way their personalities are just charming and funny enough to keep you interested.
What sort of “interesting” you ask? Well… ever flown in a tower carried by a dragon? That sort of “interesting”.
From Place to Place and Dude to Dame
My Uncle Merlin is one of those classic style RPGs where exploration, conversation, and stat checks are the basis of gameplay; there isn’t even a battle that takes place in the demo, or if there is one I didn’t find it. The hub world takes place in outer space where you click various locations to fly over and check them out. Most of the time this will initiate a conversation with the inhabitants.
Speech works how you’d expect from an RPG. You have several options to pick from and depending on your stats you might have some extras. It’s nothing too special but the enjoyment comes from the games sense of humor.
Comedy Magic in Towers of Text!
Almost everything in My Uncle Merlin is delivered with a helpful dose of comedy. For a lot of games It’s very easy to come off as try hard or heavy handed when doing this, but thankfully My Uncle Merlin has a great flow to it’s humor making every joke or oddity stand out with a nice charm.
Thanks to some great writing, I actually wanted to know what the next location would contain. Each line is delivered with just enough humor that you can’t help but stay at least a little interested. Sometimes I even had a good laugh or two, which is something most game can’t do for me.
Art’s Nice, Sounds Fine
The art for this game is also quite nice. Everything’s hand drawn and you can certainly tell, which is a good thing. The artstyle gives off an almost chiseled look to everyone which I especially like; and though everything’s shown in still images it helps to bring out that cool storybook feel the game has.
The sound itself was fine, I don’t have much to say about it really. It has some nice backing tracks, but there isn’t much in way of sound effects so yea… It’s good.
So… Should You Back This Game?
If you asked me, I’d say yes! It was a fun experience that left me wanting more. If you think this is your type of game I’d recommend heading over to Pocket Mana’s Kickstarter and downloading the demo; after that, if you think you’d like to back My Uncle Merlin, then feel free to do it! I had a good time playing it and hopefully you will too.