A game of fire, ice, flowers, and rain.
Ary and the Secret of Seasons is an upcoming game that appears to be taking a large amount of inspiration from Zelda, specifically seeming to be a fusion of titles like Wind Waker and Oracle of Seasons. In Ary, you take control of a young girl who has the ability to control the seasons and has been tasked with saving a world in which those seasons have been sent out of whack. At E3 2019, thanks to the game’s publisher Modus Games, we were shown a hands-off demo featuring a boss fight that truly showed off just what makes the game special.
Ary’s ability to control the seasons allows her to create large bubbles of winter, summer, spring, or autumn around her that can change the terrain within that bubble or even make certain things appear that would only appear during one particular season. For instance, upon reaching a beach, Ary could create a bubble of winter that would freeze the water around her, allowing her to walk on it. She can also load this seasonal magic into a slingshot, firing ranged bubbles that can do things such as create platforms of ice for Ary to jump up onto.
The person running the demo then began to approach the boss, a stone bird with wings of fire being weighed down by a ball and chain. The fight began with Ary shooting the ball at its feet with a shot of winter, causing the bird to begin flying up and forming a spiral staircase of ice that moved with the bubble now closely following behind it. After a brief platforming challenge the boss breaks free of its tower and Ary was then able to chase it around the level, fighting various smaller enemies that it summons. Eventually the bird begins to fight Ary one-on-one, starting the boss fight proper.
A lot of factors give Ary a unique feeling, but by far the moment I realized the game could be something special was when the player demonstrated how varied and creative combat using the seasonal magic can be. As the bird’s wings are made of fire the easiest way to knock it out of the sky is by shooting it with a bubble of autumn, the resulting rain extinguishing the bird’s wings and causing it to fall to the ground. This same technique can also be used to avoid its fire attacks by forming a bubble of autumn around Ary, as once again the flames are extinguished the instant they touch the rain.
We were shown other uses of Ary’s magic, such as allowing her to swim underneath the ice by creating a hole in spring, but the demo overall was in a very limited environment and it was implied that other areas and seasons may have special uses that we were not shown. Overall, the game has a beautiful art style and appears to run very well, though the demo we were shown was the PC rather than Switch version. Even so, Ary and the Secret of Seasons is currently slated for a March 2020 release on Nintendo Switch and for any Zelda fans out there, it is likely a game for which you should keep your eyes peeled.