E3 The Tales of Bearsworth Manor Impressions
Often known for its RPG flagship titles, Square Enix has released its fair share of experimental games in the past; at E3, they showed off their latest WiiWare titles, The Tales of Bearworth Manor: Chaotic Conflicts and The Tales of Bearsworth Manor: Puzzling Pages. Both games use the same basic control scheme and concepts, but different goals to create two different experiences.
Players are given a set amount of paper bears to throw per stage. Paper bears are the standard ammo that players will be tossing out, performing a range of activities ranging from picking up items, collecting candies (the main goal per puzzle level), to taking down enemy bears. To toss them, players first aim their Wiimotes, lock in the direction, and fling the controller up to toss.
As mentioned, there are certain items on the field that players can retrieve. These include a fire tag that will set a small area ablaze and a water tag that drenches all the paper bears in an area. These have to be used sparingly or at the right times, otherwise players leave themselves with no ammo against a strong boss or the wrong tools for the puzzle, forcing them to restart the whole level.
These two games are vastly different, Puzzling Pages being a puzzle game where players’ must use paper bears to retrieve red candies and Chaotic Conflicts being a tower defense style game where players have to defend blue candies against waves of enemies.
While more slow paced, Puzzling Pages is still interesting, employing timing, planning, and accuracy in its puzzles. In one level, players had to use the paper bears as weights on a scale, lifting one side higher or lower so that the bears could reach the red candy. In another, it was crucial to time the toss perfectly so that the paper bear would not be lit on fire, allowing him to retrieve the red candy.
Chaotic Conflicts, on the other hand, was more exciting and required players to think quickly. There were even more action aspects in this version. Rather than simply throwing paper bears and setting them up to defend against enemies, players can launch them directly at the enemies. Depending on the type of enemy, this can either stun or destroy them entirely. Players will be using the same skills, like timing, planning, and accuracy, in Chaotic Conflicts and Puzzling Pages, but Chaotic Conflicts kicks it up a notch by requiring players to think on their feet.
Both games are interesting and certainly caught our attention at E3. Players will want to try both for the full experience, and Square Enix representatives told us that the story truly unfolds when both games are complete. They are available now on WiiWare for 1000 Wii Points each.