Steam Gaming: A Short Hike

Posted on January 26, 2024 by Aywren

Game: A Short Hike
Time Played: 74 mins

The short Steam game of the week was true to its namesake – both short and a hike. This was a cute little pixel adventure with some undertones of the main character’s (Claire) self-growth and discovering you’re capable of more than you realize.

The first thing the game warns you is that it’s really better played with a controller. Bull-headed as I am, I gave it a go with my keyboard and mouse, and quickly found myself digging out my PC controller instead. There are some games that you can swing keyboard and mouse, but that would have been an exercise in frustration for this particular game.

I’m glad that I did pull out the controller, though, because the freedom of movement provided by this game was a joy. Claire, being a bird, has all sorts of methods of travel available from dashing to gliding to flying and climbing. One objective on your goal of reaching the summit of the hike is to gather gold feathers, which increase the time you’re able to do these activities, specifically climbing.

I know there’s at least 10 gold feathers, as I got an achievement for finding that many, but I’m not sure how many more there are. These can be found through exploration and purchasing with the coins that are scattered all over the landscape.

It’s a whimsical set of islands you’re allowed to explore, and I found the pixel art style (which you can change somewhat in the options) to be a good fit for the feeling of the game. The game also has an auto-camera that moves on its own as you explore – this was a little disorienting at first, and adds a little to the challenge of reaching certain places on the map since you have no control over moving the camera. Not sure if that’s something you can change or not.

There are also many mini-games and activities – most which I didn’t dive into all that much – including renting a boat to explore and a full fishing game. On top of that, there are quests to solve for the various folks you meet on the island, making their day a little brighter.

While I finished the game in 74 minutes, I could have spent a lot more time working on the fishing log and explore the island a bit deeper. I’m sure there are secrets that I overlooked, especially when it comes to the tunnels that I only barely explored.

Overall, this was a cute little journey game and one I recommend at the right price. Just keep in mind you’ll get a few hours out of it at most, and buy accordingly if this seems like your jam.

*|* {January} *|* {2024} *|* {Steam Gaming} *|*