Developed and published by the Polish gaming company Artifex Mundi, My Brother Rabbit is a puzzle solving, object finding, brain teaser that will leave you broken-hearted. The story follows a young girl who has been diagnosed with an undisclosed illness. As she fights for her life, her older brother tells her a story using her toy rabbit. This story mirrors their real life situation, as Rabbit is also fighting to save his friend’s (a plant) life.
The gameplay is very basic and easy to grasp, the player must collect specific objects in order to unlock a brainteaser, which once completed will allow them to advance and complete more brainteasers. The first stage of My Brother Rabbit was rather enjoyable, however after a while it became rather repetitive, and solving the puzzles felt more like a chore than actual fun. Whilst some are fairly easy, I quickly discovered that every stage has one particular puzzle that will drive you insane. I will put my hands up and admit that I did get frustrated at various points, so a fair warning, this game isn’t one to play after a long day at work if you’re looking to unwind. Instead, I would highly recommend playing this game when you’re focused and clear minded for the best results.
Whilst not a massive fan of puzzle solving games, I continued playing My Brother Rabbit because the narrative was so enticing, and I found myself wanting to know what would happen, in both the real world with the brother and sister and the imaginary world with Rabbit and Plant. I must confess that I am simply inferring the names of the two protagonists, as there is no dialogue in the game, nor is there any text. Which makes the entire experience somewhat more personal, as you are left to interpret the story yourself. Initially the lack of dialogue frustrated me, when the game began I wasn’t even sure what I was meant to do in all honesty. But as soon as I began to play, I disregarded my initial hesitations and truly believe that the game is better for it.
However, what I did take issue with was the games lack of instructions. As previously stated I initially didn’t know how to begin the game, because it didn’t tell you what to do/press etc. This continued, as during Rabbit’s adventures it isn’t always clear where you’re supposed to go in order to complete your next task. The game is constantly reminding you that if you need any hints to press L1 or L2, however these hints only seek to remind you what objects you are looking for in order to unlock the brainteaser. But these objects are already displayed in the upper left hand corner of the screen, thus render these ‘hints’ rather useless.
Taking place primarily inside the mind of two children, the designs featured in the game are everything you’d expect from a child. From a teddy bear doctor to a rainbow shower that can banish darkness. Additionally the graphics are excellent, the two-dimensional cartoon style really just fits perfectly within the narrative, I often found myself taking a minute or two to merely stare at the screen, and would encourage everyone to do the same. Simply because the sheer amount of detail that Artifex Mundi have put into each and every location, is nothing short of a masterpiece.
The music chosen seems to fit perfectly within the world that Artifex have created. It’s mysterious, upbeat and somewhat dark, these words may seem to contradict each other, but it’s hard to describe it as anything but. You may be questioning how music can be mysterious, well during the puzzles I found myself listening more intently, and it was as if the music was prompting me along, begging for me to solve the puzzle.
This game would cater perfectly to any age demographic. Its simplicity and cartoonish characters make it the perfect fit for young/new gamers. However the dark narrative, combined with its challenging brainteasers also makes it subtle for older games too. Artifex have done a great job in ensuring that their work is suitable for everyone, and not just a select few.
My Brother Rabbit proves that a game does not need an elaborate plot and script in order to prompt an emotional response with its players. Artifex tackles such a dark and serious topic, and successfully does so from the point of view of children. As adults we can see through this imaginary state into the dark reality of the situation, inferring what is happening to the younger sister, through the stories of Rabbit and Plant. I would recommend this game to not only fans of puzzle games, but to those who enjoy a game with a deeper narrative.
REVIEW CODE: A complimentary Sony Playstation 4 code was provided to Bonus Stage for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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My Brother Rabbit Review
Gameplay - 6/10
Graphics - 6/10
Sound - 6/10
Replay Value - 6/10
User Review( votes)
As a young girl battles for her life, she is told stories of her heroic plush Rabbit, who sets off on his own journey to save a sick friend.