It is safe to say that Riot has really invested in exploring the universe of League of Legends. The latest example of that approach is Song of Nunu, a story that follows Nunu and Willump on their journey through Freljord. As the title would suggest, this is a whimsical tale that follows Nunu and Willump on their journey.
The game was created by Tequila Works and published by Riot Forge. Just like other Riot Forge games, this one expands the story of Freljord and follows Nunu and Willump on their adventure. For my review, the game was played on PC, and a review copy was provided by Riot.
Connected with an unbreakable bond, they journey through Freljord to find the answer to the question Nunu has. The game starts you off with the story from the get-go. Also, the more I played, the more it was evident that the story was the main focus.
While the plot was the key aspect of the game, all the other features of the game complement that really well. The game starts off with a dark undertone but then quickly goes into this playful nature of Nunu and Willump simply hanging out.
It is a genuine friendship between the last of the Yeti and a Notai child. For a good part of the game, the duo jokes, converses and plays around with one another. Frequent things the game threw at me were the hugs, the unique handshakes, snowball fights, and the constant playfulness of both Nunu and Willump.
The game becomes more and more interesting as you play it. I started to unlock collectibles that tell more about the Freljord. Notes are given alongside other tidbits in the Notebook to give the lore background for everything you come across in the game.
I also encountered some of the other champions in League of Legends, like Braum, Ornn, Lissandra, and Volibear. Each has their own motivations and personalities that Nunu and Willump encounter along the way.
Gameplay-wise, the game continues on this playful tone of Nunu and Willump traversing the Freljord. There is a lot of jumping around, climbing ledges, puzzles, collectibles, beautiful locations, musical notes, and Poros! Who does not love Poros?
There are also many combat sequences in the game that I encountered. As I progressed, I encountered different sorts of enemies that you deal with differently. The combat system is simple; it’s a two-button combo system with a finisher at the end. For the sheer simplicity of it, it works and keeps you on your toes.
However, the biggest aspects of the game are the exploration and the puzzles. The game definitely encourages you to explore, and that rewards you with collectibles. There’s a lot of traversing, climbing, sliding on Willump, running around, etc.
Other than that, the game is filled with plenty of puzzles, each requiring the smarts to complete them as new mechanics get introduced. In my experience, the puzzles require a fair bit of thinking, and they feel satisfying to complete. It is a huge gameplay loop for Song of Nunu as you complete these puzzles to progress further into the story.
To go along Nunu and Willump’s journey, they have their unique abilities. Nunu can destroy obstacles and create True Ice, while Nunu can play songs using his Svellsongur. The visuals are outstanding, and it is a joy just to sit back and look at the surroundings and just throw snowballs at Willump.
While there are a lot of positives with the game, there are some things I encountered that are interesting or not really to my liking. There is no backtracking as the game locks you out from areas you explored. The controls are strictly geared for controllers and play much smoother with the use of one.
Sometimes, the interactions can be a little fiddly as the jumps can be a little short, or you jump to a ledge, and you do not get on it. Some minor inconveniences, but those are easily avoidable.
So, in essence, the game is all about the story, and the other mechanics build up to that. It is a great game that conveys the story of Nunu and Willump while tailoring that into the realm of Freljord. All the characters have their purpose that is portrayed well, and the lore is on point.
To end this review, Song of Nunu is a worthy addition to Riot Forge’s list of games as it expands the lore of League of Legends. It’s story, and puzzles will keep players engaged with the use of simple mechanics. I would recommend you give this game a whirl if you are a fan of League of Legends and other Riot games.
Song of Nunu: A League of Legends Story is set to be out on November 1, 2023, on Steam, Epic Store, and Nintendo.