Grow: Song of the Evertree is firmly planted between an adventure game and a sweet casual farm game, and it is an awe-inducing experience. The game is beautiful and gives you the most opportunities to explore the world around you and keep it casual with the gameplay, whilst feeding you the story.
The story starts with the Evertree thriving, full of worlds and happiness in each one of them. The people prospered and began to build up the cities by working together with the Everkin, until they discovered Alchemy and managed to start experimenting. Once that happened, they were able to build faster than they had ever imagined, but eventually, everything went wrong and the Song that kept the Evetree alive, disappeared. No more of the Song was being spread, and people lost hope, allowing the Withering to come in and destroy the planet. The art style for the beginning cut scenes is beautiful, and the music coupled with it is really magical and fantasy-like.
You get to customize your character and go on a journey to save the Evertree and nurture the world back to health from the Withering. It is a relaxing journey, and you even get your very own sweet dragon companion. My character turned out very cute, and I could have spent hours just customizing them all and making more cute characters. You live with two very big personalities, Book and Coppertop. They assist you along your journey, and give you helpful tips and fill you in on the story as you ask them.
You go off with your dragon and get to nourishing your first world seed, which is called Myora. This is spread through the song of the Evertree, and there are only a few available. The process of cleaning up the town you have landed in is very relaxing, and if you are into games like Slime Rancher and Stardew Valley then I think there is a high chance you would like this. After tidying up the town to the required cleanliness, your character starts to sing. They have the power to nourish and grow the plants and have a connection with the Song of the Evertree. I was really excited to see this, as you can instantly grow your plants by singing next to them. Watching the ground turn from a barren brown to a lush green was beautiful and offers a sense of excitement for the player.
Once you have finished saving that town and growing everything there, you can go back home to your Alchemy hut, where you are given quests, which will also reap rewards upon completion. The book is responsible for keeping track of all your quests, and there will be more towns to grow and more discoveries to make, which are important for your progress.
A little while into the story, you are introduced to the Everkin. When this happened I was so happy, as they are also such cute little creatures, and all of them unique in their jobs. Relationships are frayed since the Song disappeared, and now it is up to you to try and help them by repairing the relationship. This now gives you the opportunity to fish and catch bugs too, so if you’re a fan of Animal Crossing, this may be one to look at.
Grow: Song of the Evertree is very accessible, as there are ways to change keybinds, as well as using a controller. I personally played with a controller, as I found it easier for this game. The game is slow going, so there is no punishment or rush for doing things wrong. I really appreciated that, as a disabled gamer. You can spend as much or as little time playing the game and still feel fulfilled. As well, just the typical audiovisual adjustments that you can make. However, in the customization options, while not strictly accessible, you have the option to play as a female, male, or non-binary, which I think is a great step forward, as well as being able to change body size to be a plus-size character. I was really impressed to see these options in the game.
The current build performs very well, and it should manage to run without a hitch on most budget gaming machines. It ran really well on my mid-tier laptop, I had no issues whatsoever, and no crashes during gameplay or framerate drops.
GROW: SONG OF THE EVERTREE VERDICT
Overall, a fantastic game that yields a relaxing gaming experience for all. The adventure is fun and awe-inducing. The graphics and music are coupled well together and marry each other to make for an amazing fantasy feel.
TOP GAME MOMENT
Learning that your character has the ability to use the Song and can start to heal the Evertree!
The music is phenomenal, and really goes above and beyond to add to the fantasy experience
The characters are developed and all have unique personalities
Great accessibility features
Relaxing gameplay, easy to understand
Planting seeds one by one can become incredibly tedious
The huge swings to break wood or stone are slow, making it take a long time to collect resources
Plants are spread out, meaning every time you use your song, you sing to only one or two plants at a time.