Tentacular – The Review

March 26, 2022 ·

Have you ever thought that maybe something just wasn’t right your whole life? Maybe you felt like you didn’t belong like you should or maybe when you are in a different location surrounded by others that there is just this connection of how it should be? But regardless of where you are, do you ever feel like you could help out a lot more than what some will allow? When you think about it, finding the place where we should be can all be part of the fun. So does publisher Devlover Digital and developer Firepunchd Games bring the fun and the heart to the mix? Let’s find out with Tentacular for the Quest/2 and PCVR.

Tentacular is a VR-building physics-based puzzle game where you play as a gigantic, but good-hearted tentacled beast that is trying to help your human friends and aid in your quest for answers, and unlock elements for your very own playground in the creative sandbox mode. So before you go out into the world trying to overdo everything, there are a few things that you will want to know about. First, make sure you have some space as you don’t want to try and pick up items and swing them in your tentacles only to knock stuff around in your space around you. Second, make sure your controllers are charged. There is nothing like trying to pick up a human only to drop them because you forgot to charge. And finally, just have some fun. The world is pretty big out there, so might as well have some fun with everything. With that said, let’s continue…

In the world of Tentacular, you play as a giant squid. Not only a giant squid but one that we come to find out has been adopted and it’s your 16th birthday. So you are an adopted giant squid with a birthday with giant tentacles for arms. Let that soak in for a moment. It’s going to be up to you to help the citizens of the Island of La Kalma with different quests as you try to find out the answers and unlock elements for your playground where you can build different things or just leave things laying around as it is all up to you. But each of the puzzles that help you along your way, seems simple at first such as one of the first puzzles of picking up objects and throwing them into the highlighted area. I mean, pick up and throw really sounds simple, however, since you are a squid, you do have tentacles for arms. So keep that in mind later on when you are trying to balance objects while picking up other objects or using cables as slingshots. It’s not as easy once you get into the more challenging puzzles, but this is part of the fun. It’s almost like if you were to play Jenga with gigantic arms. It would possible to do, but funny to watch. Just remember, smaller objects should be picked up with the smaller sections cups of your tentacles while the bigger objects are best to pick up with the bigger suction cups.

You will be communicating with the different locals, but in order for you to really get the most enjoyment as you talk with them, you must tap them on their heads. Not too hard, but a simple tap to keep the conversation going. This can be changed in the settings, but it really is fun bopping them on their head and seeing their reactions at times.

Each of the different puzzles has you in the water next to a different section of the island. Now, you will not be able to go anywhere you want as there are buoys that will keep you at bay. Different puzzles could consist of moving things out of the way to using magnets from alien technology to help build things to even using cables as slingshots. But of course, you will want to make sure you try to complete the task at hand, and to help you try to stay on task, there is a timer as you want to try and complete everything in the best time possible.

But sometimes you may feel that you need to restart the puzzle or even go back to the town. If you turn around in, you can lift the handle of the box and you have that option. Or if you get stuck, tap the citizen on the head and they will ask you if you need help and they will sketch out what you should do. There is no shame in asking for help here on the Island of La Kalma.

Let’s talk about the graphics and sound. Playing Tentacular on the Quest 2 (which is also a cross-buy for the Oculus Rift/S) looks very good. Going around the Island of La Kalma and just picking up on the small amounts of details such as the GameStomp which allows you to relive your adventures to just the colors of the island and each of the way the citizens really was a joy to see and look around everything that has been added. From the sound of the gibberish language of the locals to hear the city come alive with everyday life to even the simple and calming music of the game really was a joy to listen to.

There are a few things that I would love to see added or updated. For one, movement. I only noticed click-turning, which would normally be fine, however, if you build something, you can easily knock over what you have built. This can cause some unnecessary frustration for some. The second is the difficulty of some of the puzzles. Even though anyone can pick up and play which is always good for any age, some of the puzzles could be more challenging due to the physics. Maybe having different difficulty settings might help those who may get easily frustrated to not be able to get as frustrated. Just think if you had a younger player and loved the world, but kept them engaged by easing up some on the physics. But again, you are a giant squid with tentacles for arms, so keep that in mind as it is supposed to be part of the fun of it all. And last, seeing additional puzzles with leaderboards so you can see who had the best time in completing the puzzles would add even more fun to the mix.

Tentacular brings the big heart and physics to the mix. It shows us that even though we are struggling to find our place in the world and if we are all just given the chance and we believe in ourselves, we can all prove how we belong any place where we call home.

Tentacular is out now for the Quest/2 and Oculus Rift/S on the Oculus Store and Steam VR. A review code was provided.

To learn more about Devolver Digital, please visit their site, like them on Facebook, follow them on Twitter, join their Discord, follow them on Twitch, and subscribe to their YouTube channel. To learn more about Firepunchd Games, please visit the site, like them on Facebook, and follow them on Twitter.

In case you missed the trailer, please enjoy. Until next time, I have some things to build.

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