The First Tree
Top Critic Average
I’d love to have played a game that tried to explore that rocky landscape, with some nuance, some introspection, and most of all, with some humility. This is not that game.
The First Tree tells an incredibly personal and melancholy story about the loss of a loved through the eyes of a fox within a dream world. Wandering through beautiful, abstract worlds, you learn the narrator's story as the fox searches for her missing kits. It has a surprising number of platformer elements, given the nature of the game, but doesn't distract from the beautiful story within this short exploration game.
The First Tree is an exceptional story of loss and regret. The achievement by the game's one developer, David Whele, cannot be understated. The combination of all the elements of this experience creates one of the most memorable games this year. If you enjoy narrative adventure games then The First Tree is more than worth the two-to-three hours it takes to beat it.
Everything aside from the story is simplistic, but it doesn't matter if the puzzles are non-existent or that the graphics are basic, because The First Tree packs an emotional narrative and is a game that every indie fan should play as a result.
An incredible passion project eschewing video game norms and wearing its heart proudly on its sleeve, The First Tree is a masterfully executed work of art and storytelling showcasing the harsh realities of life even in the face of beautiful surroundings.
The First Tree only lasts about 2 hours and is essentially a walking sim through a handful of gorgeous settings with bits of narrative threaded throughout. That being said, the ending truly is something special, and if you choose to get this game in the future, I'd recommend enduring through the rough narration and reaching the finale. The finale is worth it.
If you’re a fan of meditative adventures such as the likes of Firewatch et al, then there’s some enjoyment to be had in The First Tree. You’re unlikely to get emotionally invested, but its vulpine protagonist and charming visuals may be enough to keep you interested through its short running time.
The momentary fun on the fox's journey in The First Tree is certainly not the main thing in the game, but rather the touching and simple message to how we should care more about people and our feelings. Small problems in gameplay may be messed up at first, but the final product is extremely satisfying.
Review in Portuguese | Read full review
The First Tree is an indie title made entirely by a passionate man who loves to create.
Review in Greek | Read full review
While this game is a treat to play. It is even more of a therapeutic experience for the player. During the time playing this, I personally lost someone and laid them to rest which brought the story home tenfold. The game's usage of visual metaphors from the narration to the game going full circle and placing the player as the narrator at the end of the game. It was a clever end to a deeply personal story. One that I will not soon forget. This is one of those games that you can play today and write the review 10 years later and still have the details so vividly in your mind. I can tell you right now that David Wehle is going to go places. It's not a question of if, but when. Do yourself a favor that you will not likely forget, click the link below and experience this masterpiece for yourself.