The Insight: Fe Is Both Beautiful And Confounding

By Desiree Bonilla

At its best, Fe can be an amazing game for people who enjoy action-adventure games. The abstract visuals and soothing music create a very peaceful, comforting atmosphere — when you aren’t hiding from big, glowing eye creatures, that is. But although this game seems very calming at first, it becomes extremely frustrating and confusing.

You play as a very cute fox-like creature, trying to save the forest and adorable animal friends from the not-so-nice monsters. Your animal friends consist of adorable squirrel-like and deer-like creatures. What makes them excellent? Beyond the big heads, the patterns on them glow a cool, bright yellow-white color.

In Fe, you have to complete quests on different sides of the map to unlock a new language/song to sing. When you learn a new language, you will see that there aren’t actually words be spoken. Instead, you will create a peaceful tune. Each animal sings a different song and will only interact with you if you sing their particular instrumental. When calling an adult bird, you will create a high-pitched tune similar to a bird’s.

In order to get a new language you must complete a task and deal with the adult version of certain creatures. You might have to help collect orbs that the adult creature lost or help free them from the evil creatures. After that, creatures will start helping you. You will also need to collect crystals to upgrade your abilities to make traveling easy. Crystals are scattered in different places – in caves, or on rocks in the middle of a river. So if you are looking for crystals, be sure to check everywhere. You never know where they can be.

When I played Fe, I remember collecting a few crystals and getting really excited when I was able to ‘glide’ through a powerup. It really made traveling and escaping my enemies easier.

Yet the game tends to get very confusing since no one is really talking or explaining much on what you need to do. You need to be able to put things together on your own. Although there are rocks that have glowing images on them explaining what to do, it still is frustrating. When you are near the rock, you must sing in order for the images to appear. The images are hard to read, in my opinion, since there aren’t words describing what’s going on.

Enemy encounters are a little scary at times, especially the tall oval-shaped creature that has one huge glowing eye. In the game, you must hide in semi-tall bushes to camouflage yourself when an enemy is nearby. The most terrifying part is when the enemy spots you and makes this loud noise. They will also drop down on all fours and will follow you at top speed.

No matter how confusing and frustrating the game becomes, I do still enjoy it – everything from the way the sky changes from a bluish-purple to a red-orange when you enter enemy territory to the cute creatures you can interact with. If you enjoy adorable creatures like me, then this game is definitely for you.

Desiree Bonilla is a New York Videogame Critics Circle journalism intern in partnership with the Bronx’s DreamYard Prep School.

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