The thing you will notice straight away when you play A Plague Tale: Innocence is that it is a game for those who can appreciate a well told story full of puzzles and wonder.
The opening scenes of your character “Amicia” out with her Father and trusty dog for a walk in the forest that turns into a wild boar hunt is one of the most beautiful introductions to a game. When the additional story elements are introduced it turns very organically into something else.
The setting, the characters, the accents are all ingredients that add up to a well polished (and as the name suggests) “tale”, because this is not simply a third person adventure stealth game but a story full of substance, wisdom and feeling. At times it feels like a novel with it’s chapters and depth. This is highlighted with the introduction of Amicia’s younger brother Hugo who she has had very little to do with as he’s been locked in a tower recovering from disease for many years.
Oliver Derivieres soundtrack matches the style and mood of the game perfectly and it’s no wonder it’s been released as a seperate 12 track album. Oliver is the creative mind behind video game soundtracks for Vampyr, Assassin’s Creed: Black Flag and Alone in the Dark. You want emotion in a game, you use his music.
Most of the gameplay is stealth based as you attempt to avoid the Spanish inquisitions soldiers and although some of the latter stages will require more force you’ll spend a majority of the story remaining silent but on the edge of your seat as you perform this games equivalent of an “escort mission”. I normally really dislike those types of missions but Plague Tale does it in a way where it actually helps the story to evolve.
The puzzle aspects of the game come in the form of the rat swarms which you are only safe from if you are surrounded by light. It can be very “thought demanding” but get easier as Amicia’s skill with Alchemy increases. The rats are a really lovely touch to the “black plague” set era which is often associated with the infestation.
A Plague Tale: Innocence is a beautifully written game with a sense of style that feels like the 13th century era you are playing in. The game gives a sense of open world even though it is mostly guiding you through to the next destination. It’s one of the better uses of two characters I’ve seen in recent years. It was so nice to sit and play a game with a deep meaningful story which so many are criticised for lacking in the current gaming environment.
A Plague Tale: Innocence is an outstanding 9 out of 10 and is available now on Steam, PS4 and Xbox One