Elliot Quest

8.25 Overall Score
Gameplay: 8/10
Graphics: 9/10
Sound: 8/10

Real sense of adventure | Combat, puzzle-solving, and exploration shine

Lack of direction | Minor technical bugs

Elliot Quest, a Wii U eShop game, takes a while to load. The only reason I mention it, however, is because that was my very first impression of the game. The numerous impressions to come, on the other hand, varied widely and were generally positive. At its core of cores, Elliot Quest is an homage to Zelda II: The Adventure of Link, complete with an 8-bit visual style and a subtle chip tune soundtrack.

It’s hard to follow the story in Elliot Quest by simply playing the game. I learned most of what I know of the story from the game’s description, which you can find on the official site, on Nintendo.com, and in the game’s electronic manual. Simply put, you play as Elliot, a man who mourns over the death of his wife, so much so he wishes to end his own life. He can’t do so, however, because all is not well: he is being slowly consumed by a demon and must find a cure.

This doesn’t mean Elliot’s adventure runs on a time limit. On the contrary, careful exploration is encouraged as part of the gameplay. An overhead-style world map in the game connects a slew of caves, towns, and dungeons that are rife with secrets and, in the case of caves and dungeons, baddies. Once Elliot enters a point of interest, the view switches to a 2-D sidescroller. Elliot’s main weapon is a bow and arrows, but he acquires additional weapons, power-ups, and useful items through puzzle-solving and boss-slaying.

227-Elliot Quest World Map

Quite often, there are areas of the map where progression is limited until you return with the proper weapon or item. This proves to be a double-edged sword in the game. On one hand, it’s satisfying when you realize that an item like the wing, which allows Elliot to perform a double-jump, opens up at least 2 or 3 areas on the map you previously visited. On the other hand, players, especially casual ones, may find it tedious wander the world, searching for the next explorable area, sometimes in vain.

Elliot Quest definitely shines once you reach that explorable area, though. The sense of discovery and accomplishment in the game matches that of the Zelda series very closely. Combat against enemies that display a great amount of variety never gets old somehow. And the game’s minimalistic use of the GamePad feels just right; the second screen simply displays the different start menu screens, which include a map, an inventory, and a skill tree for when Elliot levels up. Oh, did I mention Elliot Quest is part RPG? This shouldn’t come as a surprise to those who are familiar with Zelda II.

226-Elliot Quest Key Screen

Elliot Quest is all wrapped up in a nice 8-bit art style and chip tune soundtrack. Games like this are everywhere nowadays, but Elliot Quest sets itself apart with a striking, moody atmosphere and a soundtrack reminiscent of The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, both of which make the experience feel like a real adventure. Oddly, though, I experienced glitches that kept the sound effects or music from playing and, unfortunately, this occurred quite frequently. Additionally, the game doesn’t really strive to add that extra polish in terms of technology. The frame rate sometimes drops noticeably. I know this is typical in the actual classics, but it’s one way retro throwbacks like Elliot Quest shouldn’t be problematic.

222-Elliot Quest Double Jump Screen

The Recommendation

Adventure seekers, especially those who get nostalgic for retro gaming, wouldn’t be remiss in considering adding Elliot Quest to their Wii U digital collection. However, the game exhibits a lot of the traits found in classic games, and it might have done well to incorporate more modern sensibilities. It’s a game I personally enjoyed, but others might not like the lack of direction or technical hiccups found in the overall package.

Summary

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Author: Holly Fellmeth View all posts by
Site Manager/Editor - Holly's favorite hobby is playing new or different games. She believes there is no other medium that can offer such weird and wacky things as the gaming industry can. Her Nintendo Network ID is Aeroweth.