“Strawberries are full of love & happiness.” – Anthony T. Hincks
Seaberry Keep is an adorable cross between a visual novel and a point-and-click game. Players will meet a plethora of cute characters, play hide and seek with ghosts, plant magical flowers, travel through a warp portal and escape the really big castle mansion!
Developer: Cozy Strawberry
Released: 11th November 2022
Available on: Steam
This game is being reviewed as part of the Indie Game Collective (IGC) showcase.
The minimal gameplay of Seaberry Keep is part of its charm and helps maintain the relaxing feel of the game. Part visual novel, part point-and-click game, it sees players interacting with other characters, choosing dialogue and action options. Moving around the map simply involves clicking an arrow in the direction the player wishes to go (left, right, up or down depending on availability) which will move the player to a new scene.
Whilst navigating the really big castle mansion that is Seaberry Keep there are a number of mini-games to play that will progress the story and help to complete objectives such as finding keys. The mini-games usually involve simple interactions such as dragging a duster around the screen, clicking on hidden objects or rearranging objects on the screen to decorate a room or dressing up Spooky the ghost! The gameplay perhaps felt a little too simplistic at times but overall, it was enjoyable and relaxing.
Seaberry Keep has a straightforward narrative that begins with Spooky the Ghost. Spooky meets Strawberry Sorbet the friendly fairy who was on a quest with Chippy to find the witch of Seaberry Keep. Unfortunately, Chippy got trapped down a hole leaving it up to Spooky and Strawberry to go find help. On their mission to do so, they get trapped inside the really big castle mansion and must find a way to escape! The story is delivered mostly through dialogue which is well-written in a charmingly innocent way that really matches the game’s styling and casual gameplay style. There is also a wonderfully eclectic bunch of side characters to meet such as a pair of old ladies, a parrot and a sneaky ghost!
The audio and visual aspects of the Seaberry Keep are a highlight of the experience. The game has a lovely aesthetic featuring hand-drawn art almost like a child’s drawing with thick, bold linework and jolly and vibrant colour palettes. The music ranges from relaxing twinkling sounds to hypnotic unicorn singing! It is a wonderful addition to the game and feels particularly unique. The voice acting is delightful, with calming, gentle voices for each of the different characters. This alongside the soothing sound effects of birds chirping, or rain falling make for a pleasant overall ambience.
Seaberry Keep is a delightful way to spend thirty minutes to an hour. Its cute, childlike aesthetic, kooky characters, casual gameplay and family-friendly narrative make for a relaxing and wholesome experience that is perfect for winding down and enjoying with a cup of tea!
You can also watch a full playthrough of Seaberry Keep on the Indie Hive YouTube channel.
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