Games

This Game Boy-Style Adventure Is A Beautifully Simple Throwback

'Fairy Song' is a good bit of nostalgia tourism.
May 31, 2017, 3:06pm
All images courtesy of pixel-boy

I have a lot of memories of games that blew me away when I was young, but when I revisit them lately the memories seldom hold up. Things feel a lot bigger, a lot prettier, a lot more impressive in those memories. But standards raise and so too do our expectations, and not every lost-in-the-attic retro treasure can stand the test of time.

That might be what I like the most about Fairy Song. Even though it's brand new (produced as part of 1-Bit Clicker Jam in April) playing it had the feel of revisiting something simple and old and beloved, without any of the disappointment.

Fairy Song is more about exploring an odd and surprising little space more than pursuing any objective in particular. From what I saw, I wouldn't even really call it a clicker. A blobby little fairy can be lead around with the player's mouse, a few basic interactions completed, but the joy is in what there is to find and less in what there is to do with it.

Floating brickwork buildings, ships, and environments seem both skybound and submerged at the same time. Chunky pixels and a monotone palette also mean that artistic detail is sparing—but never lacking, either. The little pocketed locations and scenes the fairy can flutter around don't suffer in the slightest for the economy of their design. That's doubly true of the architecture; the little floating estates and and crunched-together structures that are both absurdly simple and completely flawless in their designs.

Fairy Song is a good bit of nostalgia tourism. Lots of simple wonder, lots of old-school beauty, but without any of the expectations of memory to weigh that trip down. Download the post-jam version for Windows over on itch.io.