Minabo – A Walk Through Life review | Minabo – A Walk Through Life is a simple game that focuses on achieving your life goals through the newly sprouted Turnip called Minabo. You can of course name it anything you like before you start, but it doesn’t offer anything past this. Despite Minabo looking great with its hand-drawn 2D sprites and changing seasons, Minabo doesn’t offer anything engaging enough to spend any meaningful time with it. Across its 25 levels, you will repeat everything you do level after level, playing as a needy turnip whose life goals are none other than to make me question mine.
ℹ️ Reviewed on Xbox Series X | Review code provided by PR/publisher, this review is the personal opinion of the writer. Got unanswered questions about this game? Get in touch on Twitter!
What We Liked!
- The Graphics | Minabo – A Walk Through Life has some very cute and detailed hand-drawn 2D sprites. The colours pop and really match the game’s overall theme. Not only this but as you progress through each of the levels, the seasons will change as you grow older. The game will change the scenery in real-time as you progress ranging from spring through to summer, winter, and fall. As you might expect each of these seasons carries with it its own set of looks. Winter is snowy with dead trees and frozen lakes. Summer is hot, and sunny with vibrant flowers and other animals, fall is a lighter brown tone with falling leaves and is cloudy. You get the picture. It’s quite a thing to see especially with these graphics as it is not so easily done with 2D. I was quite impressed.
- Too Needy | Minabo the turnip is a needy vegetable right from the moment it is born. The game’s central mechanic is its reliance on core needs. Intimacy, physical contact, and belonging. These all need managing throughout your playthrough. Making sure that these are adhered to is vitally important to your life expectancy. What starts off seemingly easy enough with your two parents right next to you becomes a tedious button prompt every few minutes to ensure your levels are high enough. On top of this, the missions don’t add anything much past, having a friend, reaching 60 years old, start a family. It quickly becomes apparent that the reason the missions are structured like this is to give you some sort of reason to even bother with managing your needs. As you start to edge towards completing your first few years, you will be introduced to other turnips that you can befriend by using the Y, B, and X buttons that correspond to each of the three needs. However, the issue here is that there are no sure ways of knowing what this person likes. You could greet your new friend with some physical contact in the form of a hug, and they could brush you off resulting in your physical contact need getting crippled. Trying again but with a different need could result in a similar outcome. It really is trial and error and makes the whole reliance on needs too much.
- Pacing Issues | Each level can take up to 1 hour to complete making the pacing of this game agonisingly slow. As mentioned above, the events that your turnip needs to complete are very limited as well. There are a few more than I mentioned of course, but nothing that needs mentioning or will make the game any less repetitive. Apart from the small detours in the game from time to time like adopting radish pets, and encountering instant death potions (not as often as they should be) the game continues to go even after you have completed all of your objectives. The only way to end this is to run for ages throughout your life avoiding responsibility, friends, parents, and more until you reach death. It’s quite sad, but also quite annoying having to do this every time.
What We Disliked
- Too repetitive | As you can probably guess by now, Minabo – A Walk Through Life is a repetitive game. While the aforementioned issues like being too needy and the awful pacing issues can be an acquired taste, I do feel everyone will feel the repetitive nature of this game. As I mentioned in the intro, Minabo has 25 levels, with the first 5 being mandatory to complete before you unlock Free Life mode. As exciting as that sounds right now, it only lets you play freely doing any and all objectives as you can with no specifics to be met. This is more of a see how long you can last mode, but in essence, it is still the exact same thing.
- The Music | The music is very repetitive. The main song loops over and over again and the characters have very limited sounds as well. The turnips make some cute noises similar to that of Elmo from Sesame Street, but other than this, that’s it. I think by now you get the picture of how bad the pacing is and how repetitive it can be, so imagine adding this to the mix and listening to it over and over again. Especially if you are going to try and complete every level. That is almost 25 hours of listening to the same song over and over again.
- Lack of Options | For those looking to tweak difficulty, resolution, or accessibility you won’t find anything here. Minabo – A Walk Through Life offers a very limited options menu with none of the essentials that should be included in games.
How long to beat the story | 25 hours
How long to get all achievements | 25 hours
You’ll love this game if you like these | Story of Seasons, Littlewood. Gaucho & The Grassland
Minabo – A Walk Through Life is a disappointingly slow and hard game to get into. Almost every mission is similar in its objectives, and combined with its repetitive nature and pacing issues, makes this one of the worst games I have played this year. I appreciate the level of detail in its graphics, but this is all style and no substance.
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I make my own games as part of my profession and love playing co op games with friends in my spare time. Avid dog lover and camper van enthusiast.