This title was reviewed on Nintendo Switch, but is also available on PC, PS4, Xbox One, Android and iOS.
I’m going to be perfectly honest here, I find this game kinda difficult to talk about. The original was a mobile game and honestly it doesn’t feel like its changed up the formula that much. I’m not saying that’s a reason to dismiss it but only to say that it’s not my scene, the last title I played on my mobile was Resident Evil 2 on an emulator so qualified I am not. None the less let’s take a proper look at this charming little title and give it a good run down shall we?
Clouds & Sheep 2 was originally released in 2015 and was published in house by developer HandyGames and was released on a variety of platforms including all mobile systems, consoles, and PC as opposed to its predecessor which was mobile exclusive. This review is based on the Nintendo Switch version which was recently released.
There isn’t really a particular narrative to this game, I don’t think it truly needs one. It’s a game in which you care for sheep, making sure they are happy, well-fed and watered, pretty basic stuff. Where it gets different is when it seems that you are playing as Storm post X-Men after leaving the superhero life behind and starting a farm… but I’ll leave that for a bit.
Presentation in this game is very charming, the overall style is the simple hard lines and soft shading of a drawn image which I’ve always found very appealing, the kind of art style that is timeless. The Soundtrack is also pleasant but also a very standard affair for games like this. Overall I like the presentation, its charming and quaint in a way that makes it enjoyable to play for hours on end. No hard colours or garish UI. It’s like a feather down pillow, soft and inoffensive.
Gameplay is my main issue with this game, not that its bad but, it’s like the ghost of an Arnott’s plain biscuit, it’s a non-entity and before that it wasn’t particularly memorable enjoying it in the first place. The gameplay serves its purpose and it does it well with the ability to move sheep, throw them, make them fall in love and also forcing them engage in activities like bouncing on a trampoline or playing on a see-saw. The one gameplay mechanic that sticks out is the ability to use clouds, hence the name, to your advantage or in my case the extreme detriment of my flock. In Clouds & Sheep 2 you have the ability to grab onto clouds and form larger ones by mashing them together with other clouds like play dough with osmosis. As the clouds get bigger they steadily turn more and more dark until they either rain to create food or until they contain the wrath of Thor which I often utilised to torment my sheep like the crazed malevolent god I usually turn into when a game gives me ultimate power. (Shoutout to The Sims and my series of underground prisons for bad neighbours.) Clouds & Sheep 2 gives you the ability to do this to collect resources and clear parts of the environment for literal greener pastures. The gameplay of Clouds & Sheep 2 is simple, its serves its purpose and that is it. There is no depth to the mechanics and aims to scratch the mobile game itch, an itch I just don’t seem to have.
Clouds & Sheep 2 is an enjoyable game for someone other than me, I can see the way all these mechanics line up in a picture I just can’t see, like I’m looking at the tapestry from behind while also wearing 3D specs and standing on my hands, confused and feeling like I’m probably looking at this all the wrong way. Presentation and soundtrack are genuinely fun and enjoyable, gameplay is just where it loses me. I know it isn’t bad but it’s trying to scratch an itch I just don’t have so it’s sort of just rubbing a patch of skin and its getting real awkward for the both of us. Clouds & Sheep 2 just flat out isn’t for me, so I’m going to go waltz off on my hands and leave Clouds & Sheep 2 to its own devices.