The Last Campfire

Game review by
Chris Morris, Common Sense Media
The Last Campfire Game Poster Image
Utterly charming, brilliantly made puzzle game.

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

Gameplay promotes helping others in challenging situations, and working hard to make their situations better. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

Ember helps others overcome their fears -- and faces down their own -- while remaining compassionate. 

Ease of Play

Some puzzles are especially challenging, but others can be solved quickly. All of them can be resolved with some thought. 

Violence

Moments with a snake in the later levels of the game could be intense for very young players, but otherwise, there's no violence shown.

Sex
Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Last Campfire is a puzzle game available for download on Apple Arcade. The gameplay encourages players to proceed at their own pace. While some puzzles are quite challenging, others are fairly easy, which strikes a balance between accessibility and frustration. There are some intense elements (a snake that appears in the last third of the game might intimidate some young players initially), but there are no other elements that would raise parental concerns.

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What's it about?

In THE LAST CAMPFIRE, players assume the role of Ember, a lost being that finds themself trapped in a puzzle-filled land, filled with lost souls. They (Ember is genderless, and always referred to as 'they' in the game) make it their mission to help those souls, which involves solving puzzles of varying degrees of difficulty (some are simple, while others can take a half hour or more to deduce). As they save others, they progress further into the game, meeting a variety of strange creatures and discovering lost journals from a mystery explorer. 

Is it any good?

While it's technically a puzzle game, a bigger emphasis is the large amount of charm found in the gameplay. The Last Campfire focuses as much (or more ) on the story as the game and it's better for it. Ember is an empathetic, engaging protagonist who you quickly find yourself rooting for and the game's challenges never seem unfair. There's a near perfect blend of easy and challenging situations to overcome to keep you moving forward -- such as lighting vines to clear paths, or uncovering switches to move platforms -- and there's never any time pressure or penalty for the player. Plus, the story's focus on helping others, especially people that were having trouble or couldn't succeed at a task, is just a positive value for players to experience.

On top of all of that, the game's beautiful to look at. You'll explore a variety of worlds and meet visually captivating creatures as you progress through the game. Perhaps best of all, the game shows the value of keeping hope alive in the darkest of times -- and how positive an impact that can have on the lives of you and people around you. It's a feel good game that's never cheesy - and it doesn't overstay its welcome, lasting just long enough to leave you satisfied, but wishing it went on just a bit longer. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about compassion and the benefits for both the giver and recipient. Why is it important to be compassionate towards people in need? What does someone receiving help provide to those that give assistance?

  • How do you approach solving problems? Have you been able to use the way you would solve problems in games in real life? What can you learn from trying different solutions to the same problem?

Game details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love puzzles

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