A Wolf in Autumn is a short puzzle adventure game that was released in October 2015, being developed by David Szymanski. As you get told when launching the game, it is intended that you finish it in one sitting, which takes about an hour.
You play the game as a young girl, and you find yourself in a forest at the start of the game, locked in a shed by your mother. To begin with your mother and surroundings seem very peaceful, but this soon takes a dark turn. Gameplay is from a first person perspective, and the main tasks involve solving puzzles that use real world logic. The puzzles do require some thought though; you shouldn’t be put off by the starting area as that is the one I found the most difficult. I’m not ashamed to say I spent at least ten minutes trying to get out of the shed only for the answer to be extremely obvious. You are able to pick up objects, but sadly you can only have on item in your possession at a time, meaning a lot of running back and forth to get items is required.
The game is run using the Unity 5 engine, and whilst the graphics aren’t the best, they do portray the darkness and surreal atmosphere very well. The game does have some nice lighting effects as well. It can be run on pretty much any resolution up to and including 4k. The voice acting of your mother is very well done too; I genuinely got scared towards the end of the game just from the sound of her voice.
Whilst there isn’t a very deep plot to this game, there are still some underlying potentially disturbing themes on show, and is not something which people who are easily upset by such things as child abuse should take lightly. Maybe the developer is trying to show us something through the story, I don’t know, but I found it very interesting to see how the plot unfolded.
As you can see from the amount of time to play the game, I didn’t find it all that difficult. If you apply logic to the puzzles, you can easily work them out, and often just pausing for a moment and thinking how you would get out of this situation yourself is usually the write answer. I completed the game in about half an hour. Some might think that is short for any game, and I can see why, but I was enthralled with the game from the get-go so I am not going to complain too much about the shortness. I have seen that you can complete puzzles in more than one way as well; this may add a little replicability but I am more than happy with just the one play through to satisfy my experience with this title.
I didn’t have any technical problems whilst playing; it is running on a very well matured engine so it should be expected.
I enjoyed my time playing A Wolf in Autumn, not all horror experiences have to include an abundance of jump scares to be classed as scary; the atmosphere and undertones of this game are scary enough for me. The price of £1, 59 is fair, regardless of the length of the game. The developer has put plenty of hours into making a really good game, and that is definitely worth the £1, 59 in my eyes.