Entwined review for PS4

Platform: PS4
Publisher: SCEA
Developer: Pixelopus
Medium: Digital
Players: 1
Online: No

Don’t take this the wrong way, but I kind of hate playing Entwined.

I can see how that could be misconstrued, of course. Using the word “hate” tends to do that. But the key part of that sentence is actually the verb: “playing”. See, every minute you spend with Entwined is one minute closer to the end — and, unfortunately, as an incredibly short game, that end comes far, far too soon. In other words, I love Entwined, I just hate that it ends so quickly. With only nine “lifetimes” — each of which can be finished in no time at all — you’ll be lucky to get more than three or four hours out of it.


On the plus side, at least, those three or four hours are pretty magical. Entwined follows firmly in the footsteps of the likes of Journey, Flower and The Unfinished Swan, an artsy experience that just so happens to have straightforward gaming mechanics. In Entwined’s case, that mixture plays out with a combination of a story involving a bird and a fish, and controls that are as simple as guiding the two protagonists with the DualShock 4’s twin thumbsticks.

There’s a little more to the game than that…but not much. The controls stay the same from the first level (sorry, lifetime) to the last, with the only real difference being that it gets more difficult to guide the fish and bird the further into the game you get. There are slight differences, too, between how each level looks, but honestly, if you were to show me a level at random and ask me which one it belonged to, I’d have no clue.


Not that I’d complain about looking at the game, mind you. A big part of Entwined’s allure is its aesthetics, and it both looks and sounds fantastic. Graphically, it’s a feast for the eyes, with bright vivid colors that draw you in and give you the impression of soaring through the…er, whatever environment allows both a fish and a bird to soar. The music isn’t bad either, perfectly matching the action on the screen.

For some, of course, the fact the game clocks in at such a short running time is a dealbreaker, and that’s somewhat understandable. After all, why invest — monetarily and emotionally — in a game that’ll be over and done with so quickly? Then again, if ever you wanted an argument for quality over quantity, Entwined is it. It may not be long, but it doesn’t need to be, either, and it tops it all off with an abundance of style.

Grade: A-