Ori and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition

Game review by
Chad Sapieha, Common Sense Media
Ori and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition Game Poster Image
Great platformer with ecological themes just got better.

Parents say

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Kids say

age 7+
Based on 2 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Educational Value

Kids can learn to develop their ability to persevere in the face of challenges with this demanding platform adventure game. Its slowly intensifying difficulty will lead to an increasing rate of failure and restarts. But eventually kids will master key skills -- such as repeatedly double-jumping through a series of portals without ever touching the ground -- at which point new areas of the game open up and new treasures are earned, resulting in a rewarding sense of elation and accomplishment. Ori and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition can show kids that sticking with a tough challenge, until it's understood and mastered, can be both satisfying and worthwhile. 

Positive Messages

Narrative serves as a metaphor for conservationism. Challenging action, puzzles reward determined players.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Ori is kind, caring, clearly loves Naru, maternal creature that looks after him; also cares for the greater forest around him, which motivates him to set out on his adventure. He's not a fighter; his friend Sein is the one who attacks enemies to protect Ori. 

Ease of Play

Requires skill, practice, precise interactions. Unlike in the original, this version includes new play options, including an easy setting for younger, less experienced gamers plus harder settings, including a fiendishly tough one-life mode.

Violence

Bursts of energy fired from Ori's tiny friend Sein cause enemies -- dangerous vegetation, strange creatures -- to disappear in a flash of light. A noninteractive narrative sequence shows quiet death of an important character via starvation.

Sex
Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Ori and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition is a downloadable side-scrolling platformer starring a small white feline creature who embarks on an adventure to save his ailing forest and the creatures within it. Combat is challenging but fairly mild, and Ori generally doesn't fight. Instead, his floating friend Sein attacks plants and creatures that pose a threat to Ori, causing them to disappear in bursts of light. That said, an emotional moment early on sees Ori mourning a character important to him who dies of starvation. Themes of conservation, duty, and respecting the natural world permeate the story. This expanded edition also features multiple-play options, including both easy and very difficult play settings, although players will need to focus on split-second timing and precise moves to succeed in this game.

User Reviews

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Teen, 13 years old Written byParrotMan April 2, 2018

Great, but annoying

I think this title is great, but, MAN is it frustrating! It has great graphics, good controls, and is entertaining, but it gets annoying. This game is overly ha... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byTheGamer183 August 18, 2017

Just perfect!

I loooooooooove this game! The story is fantastic, the graphics are beeeeautiful, the characters are very cool, the gameplay, the fascinating complexity of the... Continue reading

What's it about?

ORI AND THE BLIND FOREST: DEFINITIVE EDITION begins in the same heartbreaking way as the game it builds on. A small, catlike creature named Ori falls from the forest's great Spirit Tree and is looked after and nurtured by the maternal Naru. But the tree and the forest soon begin to sicken, and Naru perishes of starvation, leaving Ori on his own. He meets a tiny floating being named Sein who explains the darkness that has befallen the woods and then guides him on a quest to set things right. Ori explores the forest and solves contextual puzzles as Sein floats alongside him, defending Ori from any malevolent creatures and plants they discover. The Definitive Edition differs from the original thanks to the addition of a couple of brand-new areas for players to explore that are filled with new puzzles and narrative, a greater variety of difficulty options (including both harder and easier settings), the ability to travel fast between Spirit Wells to save time navigating, and new extras that provide fresh insight on the making of the game. 

Is it any good?

Unlike the definitive editions of many games, this isn't simply a basic collection and repackaging of previously released content; it actually adds significant play improvements and fresh content. For returning fans, the biggest draw will be the two new areas -- Black Root Burrows and Lost Grove -- both of which are just as visually sumptuous as the rest of the game. They offer original narrative (we finally get some backstory for Naru) while also providing new abilities -- including a lightning-quick dash move and missiles of light that can be aimed manually -- and new navigational experiences that will force players to find their way in areas lit only by the orb hovering beside Ori. Combined, these two locations add a significant amount of never-before-experienced action that merges and compares nicely with that of the original game.

Veterans will also appreciate the ability to crank up the game's already considerable difficulty (the single-life mode is for experts only), as well as being able to travel fast between certain points, which makes it much easier to quickly return to previous locations; that's a key part of the game, especially as Ori gains the abilities necessary to enter previously inaccessible areas. For those who found the original a bit too challenging, a new easy mode is noticeably more forgiving of mistakes -- especially around enemies. Keep in mind, too, that if you already own the original you can access all the new features for just $4.99 rather than repurchasing the entire game. Those fresh to Ori will need to pay full price ($19.99), but it's well worth it.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about screen time. How do you know when your kids have had enough? Is it difficult to pry them away from their favorite games? Setting time limits in advance can help head off problems before they happen. 

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