Little One – Child Raising Simulation – Game Review
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My first playthrough of Little One took 6 hours and I received a “pretty good ending” according to the game. I see the Achievement I got for this ending has only been found by 18% of the players on steam, so I feel pretty satisfied. I see some people giving it harsh reviews about the quality of the writing, but I disagree. It felt very natural and very heart felt and emotional to me. I enjoyed it very much. I do think every playthrough is different so your mileage may vary.
My little one ended up enjoying painting and writing stories and the stories he wrote were very beautiful and sad. I enjoyed that aspect a lot. He told several stories. For example one was about a star that fell to earth and took a girl to heaven. Another story was about a mushroom who could only watch children play but couldn’t play with them. And another story was about a horrible monster who could never die.
Of course, as is the case with these games, your character will develop uniquely and I am not sure if everyone’s little one will tell stories, but mine did and honestly, his stories were a bit more interesting than the main story.
Trying to describe the main story without giving too much away…. I see on the steam page the game creators say this game takes place in 1990. Uhm I would strongly disagree with that. LOL. All of the characters dress like medieval fantasy renaissance steam punk characters and the buildings and settings and surroundings also fantasy-ish. So disregard whatever the steam page says because it’s not really accurate. If the creators of this game wanted to make a game set in the 90s, that’s a HARD FAIL. I’m a 90s kid and nothing – NOTHING – about this game screams 90s. There’s no hints of 90s pop culture or fashion or references to anything – this is not like Stranger Things – which successfully pulled off that 80s/90s vibe. Nope. Not even ONE thing about this game has anything to do with the 90s.
I would say this is a fantasy game, could be set any time, any place, in a fantasy world. The little boy you’re raising has a dark secret. Is he a demon? What is he hiding? – I know what it is – but I won’t tell you – you should play for yourself to find out.
I will also say this game deals with mental health in a very interesting way, both as part of the story/mystery of the game and also as an actual stat in the game. You have to balance traditional stats like strength and wisdom, along with a unique fear stat, to get the best ending. You also have to reach timed events with certain stats by a certain time – I missed some early on. Buying items in the shop can also trigger different events and endings. Also, your decisions in story prompts can affect the ending and parts of the story. So yeah, this game is very interesting. I’ve only played it once so far. It is fairly short, taking a mere 6 hours for my first playthrough. I will probably play it again maybe, although I’m mostly happy with my ending. There are a few more mysteries to solve.
I enjoyed the game but had a few complaints:
Character art is reused a lot. There’s 3 triplets who only have a different color shirt and apron. Then there’s a woman with an eye patch, man with scar, and your little one. That’s it. There’s maybe 3 or 4 different backgrounds. And even fewer cg scenes – I encountered maybe 2 or 3 on my playthrough.
There’s no voice acting. Music was nice but also reused a lot.
But it was an interesting and quick story and I would recommend it to anyone who is a fan of stat raising simulations – of which there are not many games like this available in English – Princess Maker and Lucky Rabbit’s Foot come to mind.
If you like the idea of raising a child and unraveling a mystery, give this game a go. Otherwise, maybe wait for it to go on sale. There’s no action as is the case for most visual novels and add to that the fact that the story is pretty short for games of this genre.
Total Score: 55/80 69% D+ Average Game For Girls
Overview: 7/10 – I really enjoy these types of stat raising games, and I felt this one had a unique story with some fun gameplay elements.
Gameplay: 8/10 – It can be challenging to balance all your stats and reach certain benchmarks by set timed events. But that challenge makes it more fun in my opinion. Also things for sale in the shop and your decisions in the story also help shape your little one. I feel like there is a great deal of choice, or at least perhaps the illusion of choice. I felt like my little one was unique to my gaming experience and that helped me bond more with the characters in the game.
Story: 7/10 – I like the story and how it handles mental health in a fantasy setting. I also liked the side stories my little one created on his own. They were more interesting than the main story lol.
Characters: 6/10 – There’s only about 6 characters, 3 of which use the same graphics, no voice acting for anyone, and not much depth to the characters but yet, the bond you form with your little one, and learning his back story and the mystery in the game make it enjoyable.
Graphics: 6/10 – characters and backgrounds are beautiful but get reused too often which is extremely noticeable and the lack of enough event scenes really was a big downfall.
Music: 5/10 – again decent music but gets reused so much that it becomes bothersome
Voice Acting: None
Replay Value: 9/10 – I still want to learn some of the mysteries I missed, and I think it is quite challenging to get a good ending. So I would say the replay value is quite high.
Geeky: 4/5 – no combat but enough other stuff to keep you busy
Sweetie: 3/5 – Short and sweet little story about a cute but troubled young boy. I’d give more points if the story was a little more fleshed out.
Total Score: 55/80 69% D+ Average Game For Girls