Saturday, December 22

Review: Clouds & Sheep 2 [Nintendo Switch eShop]


While most people I know who own a Switch are gamers of the more hard core variety there are, no doubt, more casual players who come to the system and are looking for something a bit less intense or something they can enjoy with their younger gamers-in-training. One glance at the colorful and cute Clouds & Sheep 2 would, no doubt, seem to make it look the part for providing such an experience. When it starts out it seems pretty straightforward and even similar to other casual games I’ve played before, working to manage your sheep, keep them fed, and to slowly build up your farm. The surprise is that the game really just keeps going with all sorts of challenges, surprises, and can even risk being a bit overwhelming with your options of what to do next.


At its base this is a resource management game, you’ll want to keep your sheep provided for with ample food and water. You’ll also need to worry about taking care of them if they get cold or even sick as well since, if neglected long enough, they will die (though for a price you’ll be able to resurrect them). Their happiness results in stars that act as one form of currency for building or buying other elements (or sheep), but there end up being several items that you’ll need to try to manage and collect, including yarn, wood, and hearts. The pretty thorough tutorial will walk you through the basics of it all and set you on your way but from there it can be a wild ride at times as you try to meet the various demands of your flock, expand, and keep things from falling apart.


With an ability to outfit your sheep in some cute and silly gear and to customize the multiple settings you’ll gain access to there’s a surprising amount to do and make your own here, far more than I’ve seen in similar casual games. The challenge can also get pretty intense at times if you’re not staying ahead of the curve on taking care of your resources and properly managing things. In particular if you’re not combining clouds to keep up with your flock’s needs for water or turning them into thunderclouds so you can zap poisonous mushrooms on a regular basis you’re going to be in trouble. It can be hectic one moment and then slow to a crawl another if you’re waiting on a specific resource to become available but on the whole there’s far more to this casual game than anyone would suspect. Don’t relegate it to being for the kids, the game is full of surprises and will even pose a challenge to the most hard core gamers in places, making it a really pleasant and fun hidden gem in the eShop.


Score: 8

Pros:

  • Undeniably cute and even silly
  • A surprising variety of things you’ll need to do to tend to your flock
  • Multiple environments and even an over-arching quest provide ample content to enjoy for a while


Cons:

  • It may actually be too tough for younger gamers, who may need some periodic help to get back on track
  • It can be very hectic one moment and then drag the next
  • Recovering once you make some key mistakes can be tough