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Mundaun Review – A Sketchy And Unsettling Neighborhood

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Mundaun observes some of the best and most worn-out elements of the horror genre – a spooky setting, an emphasis on inventory management, and plenty of puzzle-solving – and draws them on a living notebook for players to use. both admire and wince. Because of this, the game doesn’t do too much to differentiate it from its horror contemporaries, and doesn’t fully replicate the fun of these mechanics. But like admiring the rough sketch of a still image, I find myself appreciating the finished product despite its rough edges. Mundaun serves as a respectable descent into madness that provides its fair share of unsettling moments.

The tale takes players on a disturbing journey through a cursed version of the real Swiss village of the same name. As the grandson of a retired soldier, you return to the small mountain town to find out the cause of your grandfather’s mysterious disappearance and get more than you bargained for thanks to the presence of a malicious entity.

Much of the adventure is spent finding keys to unlock doors and solving generally solid environmental puzzles. None of the obstacles present a real challenge and the game guides you through some objectives, but at least they come in many different shapes and sizes. One puzzle tasks the player with creating the correct symbols on a series of wheels to open a door while another asks players to knock on hanging plates of meat to form the correct sequence of musical notes (sort of) . Most problems just involve finding the right tool for the right job, but navigating the awkward inventory menu is a pain. Saving progress also requires some degree of child care. The game doesn’t auto-save as regularly as expected, so unless you manually save regularly, you can easily lose 15-20 minutes of progress when you die, which can put a damper on things.

Mundaun’s setting serves as a semi-open hub where players gradually ascend a mountain top, either on foot or by driving a somewhat bulky hay-collecting truck. I enjoyed exploring the charcoal-tinted world and discovering lore-building notes and clues. Mundaun also rewards deep exploration with buffs to his three character branches: health, weapon handling, and fear resistance. Things are generally fine during the day, but exploring at night brings out a limited selection of enemies that players can avoid or (possibly) face. I recommend staying stealthy as the shooting isn’t great and warding off spirits using a special lantern seems less effective than it should. Fortunately, the confrontation is completely optional; you can finish Mundaun without hurting a soul.

Mundaun’s pencil-drawn art style gives the game a unique and effective visual identity. The experience is best described as a spooky sketchbook that comes to life, with rough charcoal strokes and stripes that look cool and give Mundaun an eerie vibe. Everything just looks “off,” and I regularly found my hair fluffing up when I stared at a weird face or a scary photo for too long. The graphics are enhanced by the elevated animations, which actually work in favor of the game. These crudely drawn characters don’t appear to have been designed with fluidity in mind, so the jerky animation adds to their quality of ” living illustration ”.

The threatening atmosphere managed to keep me going; I’ve only encountered a few big jump scares, but they work because they’re not overused. I found the mystery interesting enough to pull myself forward, and the story is simpler than I expected. This is not necessarily a bad thing; sometimes it’s easier to appreciate the frightening moments when you’re not trying to unravel a convoluted mystery. Players can steer the narrative to some extent with a small handful of choice-driven dialogue options during the second half of the game. They don’t detract from the narrative, but the choices are standard and feel nailed down.

With a spooky vibe, solid gameplay, and an intriguing narrative, Mundaun is a good time even if it won’t wow horror veterans. It’s worth checking out if you’re looking to experience some good scares and see his nasty art direction in motion. Much like its aesthetic, Mundaun ends up being a rough but respectable representation of some of the best horror games in the genre.

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