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NUTS Review: A Slow Burn Game About Squirrels

NUTS will put you in the shoes of a researcher interested in squirrels living in the depths of the Melmoth Forest. A great find for lovers of walking simulators.

We usually refer to gaming genres as our comfort zones for choosing what to play next. We usually trust those pre-set patterns that define these genres before we “buy now” on our favorite online gaming stores. Thankfully, some games defy these pre-set patterns.

NUTS is one of those games. It is a mesmerizing and bold game. NUTS shows us that indie games are special in their own perspective and the developers behind these games deserve every praise. Without further ado, let us see what makes NUTS unique.

NUTS starts with putting you in the shoes of a researcher. You will be living in a tiny caravan in the depths of the Melmoth Forest. The forest is a house for many animals. But only one of them is your research goal: squirrels. You will research squirrels living in the Melmoth Forest. The squirrels are cheeky and mobile, so be ready to record them over and over again.

NUTS - beautiful color scheme

As we have said before you have been hired as a researcher, to create a report on the environment of Melmoth Forest and why it should remain untouched. Your main contact is Nina who hired you for this job. Throughout your research you will find her recordings around the forest, giving you information about her and her research 15 years ago. It is a nice touch since you learn a personal side of Nina as well. You will be traveling a lot around the forest to complete the game.

Every morning you will contact Nina to hear about your tasks. Get your camera set up and record. Later you will analyze the footage of the squirrels and try to discover more about them.

Your job description changes throughout the game but it still revolves around squirrels and the camera. Even though the squirrels have their little animations, they always follow the same pattern at night which is a negative aspect of the game. The squirrels should have a bit more personality and varying movements to them to make it more interesting.

You will be setting up cameras to watch the squirrels to find out the truth. Mind you they move a lot but their patterns are observable. You will be recording them and analyzing the footage in your minivan. Each morning you will get your camera to wander into the woods and set it up. This does get repetitive, and although the game gives you small surprises here and there, simply moving a camera around 7-8 times does get boring, to be honest.

NUTS - Researcher screens

Let’s talk about the squirrels. When we think about squirrels, there is nothing scary about them, we simply think of them as cute furry animals. But in NUTS, you delve deep into squirrels and notice that they are not as cuddly and friendly as you think they are. The developers had a very interesting approach by choosing squirrels as the main antagonist since people think of them as cute and harmless. But NUTS shows us that things are never as they seem. The more truth you uncover about squirrels, the more uncomfortable it gets.

NUTS - Squirrel

What makes NUTS so fantastic is the artwork and the sounds in the game. The game has such a unique color palette that you could never get bored of it. The sounds in the forest are top-notch. A hint of advice, do not play the game in a dark environment because it gets very immersive. The dual color schemes are beautiful, and even though the game sometimes reminds us of a walking simulator, the visuals of the game make it engaging and keeps you on your toes. The only downside is that sometimes with black objects, you might have trouble finding them, because of the artwork.

NUTS - computer screens

There are some cons to the game. While NUTS has an interesting premise, there is no replayability factor to it. If you like walking simulators then you might enjoy NUTS. But after some time, the game does get repetitive and you find that you are relieved to be done with it. Replacing cameras every time is also a bit boring and annoying. If you are not a patient person, this is not the game for you.

Let us check the pros of the game. Is NUTS a masterpiece?  Of course not, but unique artwork is exciting and keeps you captivated throughout the gameplay. The environment is fantastic and traveling with an actual GPS is quite fun. The sound work, ohh the sound work, the developers did a wonderful job creating the sounds in this masterpiece. If you are into crazy visuals with a highly immersive environment then NUTS is the one for you.

Notes

The technical side of NUTS is also pretty polished. We did not have game-breaking moments as we played through the game. Although some players have noticed frame drops when playing with their iPad. There are some instances where small glitches happen but other than that it was a smooth experience. However, on some levels, the game tasks you with finding some objects and because of the artwork, it might be hard to find them. Besides these small issues, there were no major bugs during our gameplay.

NUTS is a slow burner and there are no ways to make it go faster. Which could prove to be a bit boring for some. After setting up 3 cameras the gameplay became much more rewarding. If you try to beat the game, you will get annoyed several times for sure because there is no other way to make it move faster. The game is available on Nintendo Switch, Microsoft Windows, macOS, and Macintosh operating systems.

camera

NUTS will have its fans for sure, and some people will hate the game because it might get uncomfortable and boring at times. It is not a masterpiece, but it delivers gameplay with amazing visuals. There are very few technical problems with the game and it works very well on most platforms. So, if you are looking for a relaxing slow-burner game, then NUTS will satisfy you. At times you will feel like a detective trying to solve a mystery, after all, why else would you investigate squirrels for hours?

Developers: JoonPolMuutschChar & Torfi

Bottom Line

Gameplay - 7.5
Graphics - 7.8
Art - 9
Music - 8.2
Fun - 8.5
Replayabilty - 1
Immersion - 9

7.3

If you are looking for a relaxing slow-burner game, then NUTS will satisfy you. It is not a masterpiece, but it delivers gameplay with amazing visuals. At times you will feel like a detective trying to solve a mystery, after all, why else would you investigate squirrels for hours?

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Sarah

I am a junior content outreach writer for OffGamers. I foster relationships between gaming enthusiasts and gaming developers to create relevant content for gamers worldwide. I also happen to be a passionate writer and certified night owl.

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