Review | Alchemic Cutie

Review | Alchemic Cutie

LifeisXbox’s Alchemic Cutie review | There seems to be no shortage of relaxing RPGs over the last years. Whether you enjoy playing some Animal Crossing, Harvest Moon, or Stardew Valley, you usually don’t have to look very long if you want a new cozy game to play. And yep, I’m one of those people who really enjoy casual RPGs with colorful graphics and adorable characters. As if we weren’t spoiled already, a new one was recently released on Xbox. Alchemic Cutie was developed by Vakio and Viridian Software, and published by PM Studios. Focusing on taming wild jellies and discovering a whole island, Alchemic Cutie sure seems to have a lot going for it. However, with a long list of competitors, it has to stand out and provide additional value, so let’s see if it manages to do so, shall we?

ℹī¸ | Maui played Alchemic Cutie for 6 hours on Xbox Series X. This game will soon be available on Windows, Mac, and Linux.

What we liked!

  • The island is cute | Even though the graphics aren’t top notch, the island you wander around on is still very cute and fun to discover. Wimba island has many hidden secrets, beautiful nature, and vibrant inhabitants. The fact that the island changes with the seasons, it always a plus for me as it ensures diversity throughout your journey. I have yet to experience a change of season so I’m not entirely sure when this takes place, but the screenshots and videos look promising. The art style reminded me of similar games like Stardew Valley, and I can definitely appreaciate a pixelated adventure.
  • Relics | When you feed a jelly enough food, it will turn into a crystal relic. This change is permanent and cannot be reversed. On Wimba island, you’ll find weird stone platforms with crystals in the middle. What comes next is not explained but does make sense as they both revolve around crystals. After a jelly turns into a relic, you can put it in your backpack and place it on these platforms and the corresponding empty blue patches. This will activate certain other things and provide passage to otherwise unreachable parts of the island. I won’t spoil anything more here as I don’t want to ruin anything to those who wish to try out Alchemic Cutie themselves, but I will say that I did enjoy this part. However, I am afraid this was one of the only things I truly enjoyed about the game…

Somewhere between

  • Missing a clear goal and guidance | There is one super frustrating thing about Alchemic Cutie: the lack of clear guidance or a goal for that matter. In the few hours I played this game, I am still discovering new important things, and even though this could be perceived as fun, it’s simply not in Alchemic Cutie. A bit more guidance at the beginning would have been nice. And just an overall goal, please. Right now I’m just chasing around, taking care of my jellies and fulfilling quests for all the inhabitants of Wimba island. The only real fun quests was the one concerning the island secrets, honestly. I missed a certain challenge, even though it’s a relaxing RPG. It’s like I was just lost and didn’t even really want to play because I had no idea what I had to do, expect focus on silly little quests.
  • No character customisation | You play as Yvette, and that’s non-negotiable. You don’t get to choose what your character looks like, and you can’t even pick your own name. A bit of a shame, really, as this made me feel way less connected to the character. I can still somewhat understand the decision to skip character customisations, but not even allowing for a specific name, I don’t get it. I don’t even like the name Yvette so I didn’t identify with the main character in the slightest, and this had a big impact on my overall gaming experience. Oh, but I got a second of excitement when I saw ‘wearable items’ in my inventory. Unfortunately, it’s the jellies that get to wear stuff, not me.
  • Flute Cutie | Not sure what inspired the developers to name this game Alchemic Cutie as alchemy isn’t really a thing in this game. The ‘alchemy’ that Yvette is refering to, is all about catching wild jellies, multiplying all kinds of flowers, and converting grass into money? Yeah, I’m just as confused as you are. You walk around with some sort of flute and playing this will do all three things mentioned. Play the magical flute and a wild jelly will start dancing, hop over to the jelly, and attach it to a balloon so it flies to your jelly farm! See flowers you like but need more? Play that flute, Yvette! Even though I like the idea, I think the entire game is confusing due to its name.

What we disliked

  • Not as relaxing as you’d think | You’ll be spending a lot of time taking care of your jellies on the jelly farm. While I thought this would be a nice experience, I found it to be rather demanding and stressful. Finding jellies wandering around in the wild is quite easy, so I had a full farm quickly. I suggest you handle things different if you choose to play Alchemic Cutie. You need to keep your jellies happy and fed. You can give them some love, carry them around in your backpack, or give them items to keep them happy, and you will have to gather and purchase food to give to them. However, a jelly can only hold three items (whether they make them happy or feed them) at a time and it will take a certain amount of time for the jelly to absorb an item. Keeping them happy proved to be REALLY difficult and I still haven’t really figured out a best practice here. Feeding them was easier, but damn, these jellies poop like crazy. Oh yes, your jellies poop and you have to clean up after them! Anyway, jellies also have trainable skills, colors, and personalities. You can go into town, take a jelly and have someone train them, but what the use of their skills is, I’m still unsure of. So there we are again with the lack of guidance. Besides the jellies, other demanding things occured all over the place. The map was quite basic and unclear, the shipments were really hard to complete, and so on. In conclusion, I was ready for a relaxing RPG, but ended up frustrated a lot of times.

How long to beat the story | 20+ hours
How long to achieve 1000G | 30+ hours
Similar with | Stardew valley

50%

I am very sad about this but I’m afraid I did not like Alchemic Cutie. The lack of guidance, rather boring gameplay, and the constant pressure of keeping your jellies happy and fed just wasn’t as enjoyable as I had hoped it would be. Alchemic Cutie has some fun factors, but they get overruled by the negatives.
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