Road not taken requires patience and careful consideration of every movement. A roguelike puzzle with cool aesthetics, a lack of planning will lead to a quick death. Two consecutive failures, the game is over. Despite the warm presentation, it is brutal.
Spry Fox throws a lot of ideas into the pot, and while some bear fruit, others fall completely flat. For example, the Village Hub of the game allows you to exchange items with the locals for energy boosters or charms that affect the difficulty of puzzles in the right levels.
The idea is that the exchange of objects that the villagers desire deserves more trust and therefore better rewards. Unfortunately, the objects that the villagers want are clearly indicated, which negates the challenge.
The levels themselves vary from interesting to boring due to an early and acute level of difficulty. There is a action to balance the puzzles and the action, thanks to enemies who often feel that they are hindering the ability to solve a puzzle instead of adding depth. It won’t take you long to be able to (and become) ban certain enemies and items in future levels.
The problem is that your hooded hero can combine enemies and items in the environment to form new items, so a risk /reward element must be played. Thanks to my stubbornness, I refused to lock anything, and failure soon followed, thanks to hawks, raccoons and bees waiting to zap precious energy.
If you can not save more than half of the children in two consecutive levels, the game is over and you have to start the whole game again, unless you have created a checkpoint by offering an object to a cup. This is the only way to save the game, and it’s a pain in the ass.
Road Not Taken ironically feels between two ideals. It can offer some very interesting Puzzle mechanics, but it is blocked by complicated affairs with enemy types that add frustration. Despite the friendly artistic style, it is a daunting challenge that requires a lot of effort.