We, humans, are vocal creatures and we express our vocal nature in various ingenious ways like singing and chanting. Gris is an emotional journey with gorgeous painting like visuals and an enchanting soundtrack, a journey of a girl looking to find her voice. Developed by the Spanish developer Nomada Studio and published by Devolver Digital for Nintendo Switch, PS4, mobile and PC.
Gris is the Spanish word for gray, a colour which is associated with loneliness, despair and hopelessness. Gris is also the name of the main character, but this game is about hope, a tumultuous journey through a variety of landscapes and a story of perseverance even in the bleakest of situations. It is about a girl’s transformation from initial hopelessness and despair to a strong and optimistic girl.
The game starts off with you in the palm of a statue where you attempt to sing, but for some reason you are unable to, resulting in the statue to slowly start crumbling. You fall down, ending up on land, disoriented and weak, and this is where your journey begins. The game is divided into Prologue, four levels and the ending. The prologue sees you traversing a bleak landscape devoid of colour, but this is also where your goal of restoring colour to the world begins. Red, green, blue and yellow are the chief colours that you will be ‘painting’ the world with and these are found at the end of each level and prologue. Each colour has a correlation with nature as Red corresponds to the red sandy Desert, green symbolises a green forest, blue is for water and yellow stands for light – bane of darkness.
The gameplay is linear, smooth and simplistic. Don’t expect any sort of critical thinking with respect to the puzzles, and while some people won’t appreciate such a simplistic gameplay, I really enjoyed that as I was more interested in the amazing cinematic and visual experience that this game provided. The progression is pretty simple, you collect these stars, which are then used either to get new abilities or to proceed forward and these stars also play a different role later on. There are also collectibles called mementos which are not too difficult to find and you will find them all if you are someone who likes to go, just a tiny bit, off the path.
Coming to what I think are the best parts of this game: Music and Visuals. Berlinist did a splendid job with the sountrack and I can say that it is the best original soundtrack that I ever had the pleasure to listen to. The music has been expertly intertwined with the levels and iconic moments in a way that it feels perfect, making each scene even more emotional and much more impactful. Visually, the developers have done an outstanding job, which doesn’t mean ‘realistic’ graphics and instead is referring to the gorgeous painting like art style. As you keep progressing through the game, you’ll see your surroundings becoming more colourful, you’ll see trees, birds, fishes and all these wonderful vistas that you just can’t help but take photos of. There are these beautiful statues that have some meaning like depression, anger etc. and just taking a break to look at these statues is something I really enjoyed doing.
The forest and the gravity levels were my favourite because they provided a good change of pace from the routine exploration and added another dimension to the gameplay. The ending was so emotional for me as it showed how strong Gris has grown throughout her journey, how she persevered through all her hardships to emerge as a stronger person and I admit I cried a bit at the end. There is also a secret ending, just collect all the mementos in the game to experience it and I highly recommend players to do it.
- Beautiful Visuals
- Heavenly Music, the best I have heard so far
- Smooth gameplay mechanics
- A lovely story of restoration
Gris is a magical experience that you’ll willingly forget just to experience it again. Accompanied by an enchanting and emotionally charged soundtrack and arresting visuals, Gris is a treat for your heart, one which will leave a sizeable imprint. The voyage of transformation of Gris from despair and hopelessness to a strong, optimistic and vocal girl is a lesson that can be a source of strength in real life as well.
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Game & Developer Information
Developer Website: Nomada Studio
Developer Socials: Twitter
Publisher Website: Devolver Digital
Publisher Socials: Twitter
PSN Store Links: ₹1,415 India / £13.99 GB / €16.99 Europe / $16.99 North America
Trophy Information: 18. 1 / 9 / 4 / 4
Game Cover – MobyGames