We at Geeky Hobbies would like to thank Alasdair Beckett-King and Application Systems Heidelberg for the review copy of Nelly Cootalot: The Fowl Fleet used for this review. Other than receiving a free copy of the game to review, we at Geeky Hobbies received no other compensation for this review. Receiving the review copy for free had no impact on the content of this review or the final score.
The story of Nelly Cootalot began in 2008 with Nelly Cootalot: Spoonbeaks Ahoy! Spoonbeaks Ahoy! was a free to play point and click adventure game that was designed by Alasdair Beckett as a gift for his girlfriend. Spoonbeaks Ahoy! was successful enough that the sequel The Fowl Fleet was launched on Kickstarter and received enough funding to get made.
Nelly Cootalot: The Fowl Fleet continues the journey of Nelly Cootalot. All of the birds of the world have been hypnotized by the evil Baron Widebeard. Nelly Cootalot must stop Baron Widebeard’s nefarious plan while searching for the Treasure of the Seventh Sea. Along her journey Nelly will journey to several worlds meeting quirky companions and solving puzzles.
As a whole Nelly Cootalot plays like a traditional point and click adventure game. In order to proceed in the game you use items in your inventory, the environment itself, and various characters you encounter to solve the next puzzle that gets in your way.
Easily the best part of Nelly Cootalot: The Fowl Fleet is the story/environment. Having never played the original Nelly Cootalot, I was surprised by how charming the game is. While it is not going to be for everyone, I really enjoyed The Fowl Fleet. While the game misses on some of its’ jokes, for the most part I found the game to be quite funny. The characters are interesting and the whole experience is quite enjoyable. The game oozes charm and is kind of quirky/cheesy. If you like these type of games you should love the game.
When you first look at the game you might think that it looks like a children’s game. The game does have an aesthetic that says children’s game but that look is deceiving. The game is playable by children but the game works really well with adults as well.
Being a point and click game, The Fowl Fleet doesn’t revolutionize the genre. If you have played a point and click game before you know what to expect out of the game. While it doesn’t really innovate, it does a great job at what it is. The game is designed well and has some clever puzzles. The controls work fine and there really isn’t anything to complain about with the gameplay.
I really like that the game avoids obtuse puzzles which are present in a lot of point and click games. In a lot of point and click games you will encounter puzzles whose solution doesn’t make a lot of sense. Since these puzzles aren’t designed well, you pretty much have to use a process of elimination to figure out the solution desired by the designer. A couple of the puzzles in Nelly Cootalot: The Fowl Fleet take a while to solve but I never encountered any puzzles that made me resort to trying every possible answer until I came upon the right answer.
The biggest complaint I have with the game was the length. I wish the game was longer because I was having such a good time with the game. The ending is good but at times it feels a little rushed. At times it felt like a little more could have been added to the last act. I will discuss this further in the bang for your buck section.
The other “complaint” I have with the game has to deal with the difficulty. While a couple of the puzzles are somewhat challenging, Nelly Cootalot: The Fowl Fleet is not what I would consider a challenging game. I breezed through a lot of the puzzles since most of the answers are pretty straightforward. If you really like to be challenged by puzzles you may be a little disappointed with Nelly Cootalot. If you care more about exploring the story though, the easy difficulty shouldn’t be too big of an issue.
Finally I would highly recommend you play the original Nelly Cootalot before starting The Fowl Fleet. I didn’t play the original game and I can tell that it would have been helpful. You won’t be lost in The Fowl Fleet if you don’t play the original game but the sequel does make some callbacks to the first game and some of the characters come back in the sequel. If you don’t play the original game there are a couple situations where you don’t know exactly what the characters are talking about. Since the original game is free (you can download it here), there really is no reason not to play the original game first.
Bang For Your Buck
As I already alluded to, Nelly Cootalot: The Fowl Fleet is not the longest point and click adventure game. I finished the game in around five to six hours since I didn’t really encounter many roadblocks in the game. If you struggle a little more with some of the puzzles I think you could maybe get six to seven hours out of the game but I don’t really see the game lasting much longer than that.
Being a point and click adventure game, there isn’t a lot of replay value in the game. While some players will want to go back and replay the game, I am not big into replaying point and click adventure games. You already know all of the solutions to the puzzles so the game really isn’t challenging in a second playthrough.
At $19.99 you will have to judge how important length is to you. Nelly Cootalot: The Fowl Fleet is definitely worth playing if you like point and click games. You have to make your own decision of whether you think a five to seven hour game is worth $19.99.
I was actually pleasantly surprised by Nelly Cootalot: The Fowl Fleet. The story is charming, quirky and funny. The story may not be for everyone but I really enjoyed it. The game might not revolutionize the genre but it is well designed with clever puzzles that avoid being obtuse and confusing. The only real complaint I have with the game is that it is a little on the short side due to the puzzles being kind of easy. I just wish the game was a little longer because I really enjoyed the game.
If you don’t like point and click adventure games Nelly Cootalot: The Fowl Fleet is not likely to change your mind. If you like point and click adventure games though and like quirky/charming storylines, I think you will really like Nelly Cootalot: The Fowl Fleet and should consider picking it up.