Clover: A Curious Tale Demo

Please don't write REVIEW VERSION in the middle of your games, developers. It's very, very unhelpful.

The demo for adventure game Clover, by Binary Tweed, is out now. I’ve been playing the full game for a short while, and shall have some more thoughts about it for you next week. Meanwhile, have a quick explanation and some first impressions.

It’s a side-scrolling 2D adventure, which is played rather like a platform game in many respects. Your character can jump, for instance, with a few areas reached only by making leaps. However, it’s primarily an adventure, with puzzles based around correctly using objects in certain places. The difference is you can only hold a limited number of the many interactive items at a time. At the start you can carry only two, then later a third “bag” becomes available. This means hoarding items in a particular area, then taking those you think appropriate to the right place.

You can get arrested for loitering where you shouldn’t oughta, which takes you to the prison area, although thankfully there’s no tiresome escape-from-the-cell task to complete. A lot of people will chat with you, and in doing so offer hints about what you should be doing next.

My concerns are mostly about the presentation. The jumping isn’t particularly great – not glitchy, more slightly clumsy – the game doesn’t feel suited to it. And while this is perhaps a personal thing, the art style – a deliberately hand-drawn look – is mostly very lovely, but the characters themselves look a little too much like doodles from the back of a maths exercise book. (It seems way too mean to say they remind me of a certain geek comic’s drawings, as they’re not nearly that bad, but they sort of do remind me.)

So get the demo and generate your own thoughts. You can’t have me do everything.


  1. LewieP says:

    It reminded me of Dizzy when I played it on the 360, which is funny because it got picked up by Blitz for the PC release.

    Also of note, apparently the PC version has voice acting by Gary “UKR” Cutlack.

  2. Jonas says:

    Definitely reminds me of UserFriendly, yeah – but you’re right, this looks significantly nicer.

  3. Brulleks says:


    That’s funny, I was just going to comment that the description sounded exactly like Dizzy. Hopefully without the insta-death collision aspect.

    Which is also funny, as yesterday I found myself describing Bob Came in Pieces to a friend as ‘Thrust with environmental puzzles and ship-building instead of the insta-death collisions’

    I’m so glad we now live in an age that doesn’t rely on insta-death collisions to provide challenge. Damn, they make me SO MAD.

  4. Wulf says:

    Did John just describe Dizzy?

    *downloads, with haste!*

    • Wulf says:

      The demo was absolutely lovely, delightful even, and with such fitting voice-acting to boot!

      I’ve plumped for the full version, which I’m downloading as we speak.

      And yes, it really does play like a modern re-envisioning of Dizzy. More of this, developers, please! I’m really getting into a sort of non-violent game binge, and that there are games out there to satisfy that that aren’t just match-three puzzle games is pleasing, very much so.

      First VVVVVV, and now this! Yes, moar.

  5. Kua says:

    Well this is rather lovely. Just my kind of thing. That background piano is so easy on the ear. The visuals are kooky and pretty. I don’t know what kooky means, but still, they are kooky. And the voice actors are so wonderfully English. This ticks many a box.

  6. Bhazor says:

    We’ll I’ve never played Dizzy but that demo was just lovely. I actually like the art work much more than I thought I would though the people do look a bit too doodled.

    • Wulf says:

      Dizzy is a near flawless set of games, if it wasn’t for the lives then it’d be one of my all time favourites, but played with infinite lives you’d have a whale of a time. I heartily recommend playing the main series on the Amiga (via WinUAE, most likely), again though, with infinite lives.

    • Bhazor says:

      Thanks for the recommendation Wulf.

      Just had a quick go on Treasure Island Dizzy with infinite lives and I can really understand why so many people are so very fond of it.

      Seems like a I’ve got some catching up to do.

  7. Deejay says:

    Hi All,

    Just a quick post to say there’s a bug I’ve just found where if you play the demo, then buy the full game and continue your demo save, there’s a point where you’ll get to somewhere (not saying where for the sake of spoilers) that’ll seem strangely devoid of characters.

    If this happens to you, or you’re one of the lovely people who tried the demo, a fix should be on the way soon. I’m currently sat waiting for the builds to finish!

    Hope you all like the game. Let’s keep the Dizzy dream alive! You might also want to check out for more Dizzy goodness.