Birthdays the Beginning Review
A New Life Is Born!
Birthdays the Beginning is available now on most major platforms. It is another game published by NIS America and when I saw the first ever trailer I thought it looked great. The idea behind it mixes strategy with managing landscapes and each birthday celebrates new life. Life that you have created, by meeting set conditions throughout your journey through time and evolution. In concept, it sounds great, but is it?
Well, visually Birthdays the Beginning is a mixed bag. Sometimes it looks truly artistic while others, it looks simplistic and dated. This is most noticeable when switching from specific visual modes. You see there is the typical over world view which is at an isometric angle and here the game looks somewhat less detailed and as if it’s missing something. Once zoomed in the area springs to life and more details can be seen thus improving the sightings of actual living things. Lastly, there is the first person view which, while easily the best view, the controls in this specific view ruin its ability to be used often.
Switching between the first two view modes is key to quickening up the pace of the game. It also helps regenerate enough power to make changes to the landscape. As you progress, the worlds you get to play with get larger too. All of the life forms look unique and with some pick ups gained by playing you can mutate them and evolve them.
The games main attraction is the evolution of life and this game nails it for better or worse. You see, as mentioned above, each life form, whether it plant life or animal life requires certain conditions to be met. These can be certain temperatures, a number of plant life to act as food as well as other variables. It works rather well in most cases, however certain requirements can be a little tough.
When trying to get your first land crawling animal you need a specific amount of a certain species in order for this animal to survive. That is simple enough, but when you change the temperature of the land in order to keep the land species alive, the food source dies off and then the land crawlers go extinct.
I often found it was indeed these moments that really put me off playing for more than a few hours at a time. It just seemed too difficult for a game that is all about creation and seeing the wonders of life.
One thing Birthdays the Beginning nails though, is the soundtrack. It is at times a classy and beautiful musical score that just works. All of the sound effects used feel modern yet retro and add to the overall experience.
Birthdays the Beginning is a solid and at times, fun experience. It should be extremely rewarding and fun to explore, but fails to hit the mark on many occasions. It does keep you playing by offering a great soundtrack and some interesting mechanics, just don’t expect to play it for long sessions.
Overall Birthdays the Beginning is a decent game, it offers something fresh and interesting that it best enjoyed in short bursts.