[PlayStation 4] Joe Wander and the Enigmatic Adventures Review

by Ceidz, Owner

Joe Wander and the Enigmatic Adventures from Frozen Pixel is an indie 3D platformer on PS5. Check our Joe Wander and the Enigmatic Adventures review!

Start the best Enigmatic Adventure of your life! Solve brain-teasing puzzles, explore different worlds with smooth platforming, and enjoy the beautiful scenery in the mysterious world of Joe Wander.

Joe Wander and the Enigmatic Adventures from Frozen Pixel is an indie 3D platformer on PS5- The main character feels like a cartoony version of Indiana Jones. As the game begins, Joe Wander is immediately – and without any preamble – drawn into a mysterious portal. He’ll have to recover lost gems from different worlds in order to open new portals to progress further in this new quest.

As you gain control of the character, you’ll land in what appears to be an adventure hub that connects the different levels of the same world. The first world is a jungle, and although the world is presented as an open hub, you’ll need to progress through the levels in the designated order before being able to reach the next ones. While I’m a fan of games that do not hold my hand with basic and mandatory tutorials, in the case of this game, I would have liked to have at least a few pointers at the very beginning because it wasn’t abundantly clear what had to be done and where I could go. You’ll have to figure out what is expected of you.

Joe Wander and the Enigmatic adventures

On the gameplay side, you’ll control Joe with the left analog stick. You can use your whip with the R2 button, and you can also use the whip to reach higher platforms quite early into the game. The controls feel floaty, and I would have liked it if they were more precise. There are also bugs with moving platforms that made me go through the screen, so until they are fixed, wait until they reach their dedicated location before moving on them.

Each level has a ton of relatively easy puzzles that need to be completed before carrying on to the next area. They often require that you push blocks or objects in order to take them to the desired location. Pushing blocks was really imprecise, and I didn’t like how it needed correcting the trajectory to simply have the block at its required location. The puzzles themselves were mostly easy, so you should be able to figure them out without many issues.

One area that I was looking forward to was the level design. Unfortunately, this felt average, and the puzzles were simple and repetitive. You’ll have to push blocks, whip your way to higher platforms, or align blocks to make a laser path. The different levels in an area are very similar to one another. There’s a boss at the end of each world, and the bosses do feel creative, although it’s very easy to figure out their patterns. You do not have a health bar, so a single hit defeats Joe, which means there will be some trial and error to consider.

Joe Wander and the Enigmatic adventures

One aspect that I did have a gripe with was the camera. It is semi-fixed on the lower side of the screen and feels like the game is a side-scroller, but the levels are in 3D. This means you’ll have to go up or down vertically in the levels. The camera will get closer to you, but it definitively leads to perspective issues where you’ll – unsuccessfully – try to land on moving platforms. Luckily, the checkpoints are abundant, so you’ll never go too far back when your character dies, and you have infinite lives.

As for the presentation, the game is built on the Unreal Engine and looks great. The foliage and water effects are very good, and the main character is also well-designed. I also liked how the foliage reacted to your passage. One area that could have used more work was some of the wildlife animals you’ll meet since some of them had pretty terrible animations – with the cheetah standing out. The soundtrack is also not that good, and it has the same theme looping every minute in each world.

Joe Wander and the Enigmatic adventures

I was looking forward to playing Joe Wander and the Enigmatic Adventures. Unfortunately, the game fell very short. I liked the graphics and the water effects, although some enemies’ animations were subpar. The puzzles were repetitive, and after a little while, I had enough of pushing blocks and would have liked something more action-oriented. Joe Wander and the Enigmatic Adventures is out on PlayStation 5 at a $29.99 asking price.

This Joe Wander and the Enigmatic Adventures review is based on a PlayStation copy provided by Frozen Pixel.

Related Posts

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More