The Lion's Song: Full Season Nintendo Switch™ Release Trailer
Who it Caters to
The world in which we live in currently is facing a crisis. Every waking moment we’re subjected to news that affects everyone, from the young and innocent to the well educated. Life throws us many curve balls and it is up to us to predict the patterns and devote our time to ensure we can overcome what lies ahead. Often times it requires a present mind in order to recognize the problems at hand, to help better prepare us for the days ahead. While many of the tasks we have can be completed by our own two hands, it’s important to understand just how impactful it can be to have a helping hand push you slightly in the right direction. Chinese Daoist philosopher Lao Tzu famously stated:
“Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man how to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.”
The Lion’s Song is a game that shows you the realities that we all deal with on a daily basis, ranging from gender inequality, to depression, mental block, the loss of a loved one, loneliness, self image, ego among a plethora of others. By showing players the reality, we come to better understand ourselves and while that may or may not be the goal of The Lion’s Song, we totally learned a thing or two from the characters within the game. Anyone who loves a great narrative that incorporates a point & click adventure, along with a colorful cast of characters all of whom encompass this genuine sense of depth and intrigue, will find The Lion’s Song to be an unforgettable melody that will permeate through your soul for a long time.
What to Expect
Those who enjoy a game with incredible depth and impact will find The Lion’s Song to hit the right notes in just about every area. The choices you make along the way have a direct impact on the flow of the story for each character and their respective episodes, which ultimately entwine all paths together to create an incredibly moving narrative. You’ll help each character overcome the obstacles that lay in front of them, from the inner pains of loneliness and depression, to dealing with the overwhelming pressures of society, it’s all up to you to sew their tempestuous paths together to create something endearing. Like most point & click narrative adventures, your goal is to uncover as much information around you as possible, so clicking everywhere around the screen is imperative. The smallest of details can oftentimes be overshadowed by some of the more obvious paths which you can take, but it’s those very small details that tend to provide the bigger picture down the road, so be mindful of all things. The Lion’s Song is like a long string and you’re in control of where that string goes. You can twist and pull it in whatever direction you desire but ultimately, those decisions are going to determine the fate of those within the game.
You are, in a sense, the universal energy that guides these individuals in the desired direction, carefully revealing areas of their vulnerable being but in doing so, you come to better understand and empathize with their emotions. You’re constantly pulled back and forth with every decision you have to make, and so in the moment that decision means everything. It’s a game where you simply can’t just anticipate or “guess” your way through because in doing so you create an aura of artificiality, which really takes away from the experience. The Lion’s Song is a game that reels you in with its alluring bait, and hooks you with its powerful messages pertaining to self discovery and overcoming adversity, all the while still being a video game that entertains you with its unique visuals which take inspiration from the classic art styles of Vienna during the 20th century. Are you ready to dive deep?
Gameplay - Visuals
So before we get into the actual point & click gameplay, we wanted to touch on the visual aesthetic of The Lion’s Song, which is very reminiscent of the classic PC point & click adventures but uses a sepia tone to better convey the overall feel of the game. The tone overall feels theatrical in a way as if one were watching a classic film, and seeing each character act out their respective roles in a riveting performance. While not groundbreaking in any way, it certainly does evoke some emotional connection to the characters more, at least that’s how we felt while playing it. It strips away that spoiled brat mentality of always craving these visually stunning graphics, and allows you to truly immerse yourself in what’s more important: the compelling story.
Gameplay - Sound, Music
Hands down one of the more intriguing aspects of The Lion’s Song is its choice in music, and how it plays a role in the flow of the game. In the first episode where you encounter Wilma, a struggling musician plagued by the overwhelming pressures of society, you’re greeted with some very intoxicating music that truly reels you in every time you hear it. It’s sometimes thrown at you in a subtle way while at other times it’s served to you on this silver platter, while you just simply sit there and savor its beauty. With headphones on, you truly start to feel like you’re right there with each character, as each episode’s ambience is different and so they all trigger a different emotional response every time. There are moments where you feel this jolt of power and excitement because of the accomplishments that character has made, while other moments tear you apart and eat away at your ego because of the shame and humiliation that character encountered during their adventure. All of this entwined together is like a cornucopia of emotions that flow magnificently and convey a powerful message to those who play each episode seriously.
Gameplay - Gameplay Mechanics
So now that you know how the game sounds and looks like, let’s discuss just how it all feels. The Lion’s Song as we mentioned earlier is a point & click adventure that tells the story of 4 individuals, all of whom deal with their own respective issues. The first episode starts off with Wilma, a composer who’s looking to make it big in Vienna but is caught up in emotional discord not only with her mentor but with the pressures of society. You follow her on her journey as she learns to uncover her inner beauty, while learning to overcome the anxieties that plague her ability to create the music she desires. The decisions you make will, of course, determine the fate of her life, but that’s exactly what makes the game so compelling. Another thing to point out is that even after you’ve ended the episode and have seen the results of your decisions, you’re able to go back to specific points to change the decision which will ultimately affect things moving forward. We loved just making our first choice and running with it because much like life itself, as much as we’d love to turn back time on our hard pressed decisions we cannot. Let life take its course and see where it takes you. Fortunately for Wilma, it worked in her favor.
Episode 2 carries a much more impactful tone as it deals with a young artist who struggles to discover himself, while still trying to paint and unveil the layers of those around him. Franz and his empathetic ways often times lands him in very pressing scenarios, absorbing in all the information around him without properly assessing what’s happening within his own soul. Ultimately, it comes to a point where you’ll need to decide just how Franz deals with all of this and for those into psychoanalysis will be happy to see a familiar face during your adventure. We’ll save that for you once you dive in!
Episode 3 deals with gender inequality and the blatant discrimination towards women in the early 20th century, when men were predominantly in higher positions of power. Women were treated as nothing and despite their intrigue and, oftentimes, extraordinary intelligence in their respective fields, they were ostracized and thrown under the rug. Emma Rescnerik is highly revered in her field of mathematics and can go toe to toe with some of the fields most prominent, but due to her gender she was constantly pushed away. Her father passes away, leaving behind his clothing and so she comes up with an idea to use this as a way to make an impact on society unlike any other. How it all pans out, however, will surely be up to you!
Honey's Gameplay Consensus:
We’ll leave episode 4 [Closure] for you to discover and see just how you’ll be able to piece everything together. The first three episodes are incredibly riveting and totally blew us away in every area, leaving us wanting more episodes after the 4th. All the episodes are available to you right away, which is a plus and we only pray that the team over at Mipumi Games can maybe create a sequel that incorporates brand new characters, but somehow still has some connection to the ones in this title. That would totally be awesome and create an entirely fresh narrative that we’d be more than elated to play! Overall, The Lion’s Song wowed us with its incredible high and emotional lows, while it roared with its very unique visual aesthetic and clever use of music to drive home very powerful emotional messages. It’s certainly a game that you can play over and over again just to see what each decision entails, but just playing through it once to really soak it all in was in an experience in of itself. Highly recommended for anyone looking for a strong narrative adventure on the Nintendo Switch.
Incredibly beautiful storytelling!
Uniquely designed visuals that fit the aesthetic of 20th century Vienna.
Each episode is jam packed full of small details and impactful character relationships.
We only wish there were more episodes!
Movement with the point & click feels a bit slow.
Honey's Final Verdict:
We hope you found our review of The Lion’s Song to be a refreshing one, and that it gave you a little more insight on what to expect if you decide to pick it up. It’s certainly a treat to play and is worth every single penny you have in your pocket, though we hope you don’t pay in pennies because that’s just too much. Be sure to follow us on Twitter to stay up to date on all the latest gaming news straight from the source, and of course, Twitch where we play all of our reviewed games live just for you!
As always, for all things sweet, with news straight from Japan, be sure to keep it locked here on Honey’s Anime.
Author: Rob "NualphaJPN" B.
A passionate fan of gaming, writing, journalism, anime, and philosophy. I've lived in Japan for many years and consider this place to be my permanent home. I love to travel around Japan and learn about the history and culture! Leave a comment if you enjoy my articles and watch me play on twitch.tv/honeysgaming ! Take care!