Review: Chasing Aurora

When a new console launches early games are often experimental, with developers trying to get to grips with what the console can achieve, specifically what is not possible elsewhere. If you add a new control method to the mix, developers tend to try and put it through its paces.

Following on from the critical success of And Yet It Moves, Broken Rules has made a title that takes advantage of the asymmetric gameplay offered by the Wii U and encourages you to get your friends together for some classic local multiplayer. This is the main feature of Chasing Aurora, a Wii U eShop launch title, but also a potential barrier.

While Nintendo do try and encourage friends and family to come together, at times with a great deal of success, increasingly friends are playing together online rather than in person. It is an enjoyable title to play with friends, but ultimately your experiences to enjoy it may be limited by certain practical restraints. Chasing Aurora does have an enjoyable single player mode, but it is the multiplayer that is front and centre of this title.

The aforementioned single player mode sees you make your way through twenty different levels, each requiring you to fly through a series of rings. If you miss a ring your multiplier reduces and this push to get the best score is ultimately the goal of the single player mode. It is enjoyable to play, particularly if obtaining high scores is a personal addiction, but is an addition to the multiplayer, almost acting as a way of honing your skills when playing alone.

Controlling the birds on offer is done with simple button presses, whether you are using the GamePad or Wii Remote. The secret to perfect flight lies in flapping your wings at the right point, rather than repeatedly in the hopes it will speed you up. The way the birds move around the scenery, affected by the flow of the wind, is quite a marvel to watch while also adding a challenge to the gameplay as you can’t rely on frantic button-mashing.

Chasing AuroraThere are numerous multiplayer modes on hand (Hide & Seek, Trail and Freeze Tag), but at the core they are all similar. Much like Mario Chase, found in Nintendo Land, having four people against one is entertaining, but as soon as the numbers dwindle so too can the excitement. It must be said that Chasing Aurora is designed to be played with as many other people as possible, but playing something Hide & Seek with just two people can quickly wear thin as the excitement of the hunt dispells. While playing multiplayer you will be asked to pass the GamePad around, ensuring everyone gets a go at being ‘it’.

It is a shame that so much of the game relies upon multiplayer, or perhaps its just a shame that as you grow up you tend to play online rather than local multiplayer. The modes themselves can prove to be entertaining, but without online support and with a limited single player mode, Chasing Aurora may well just become the game you play on that rare occasion when you have a lot of friends around. That being said, it is a good game to enjoy while you can.

Chasing AuroraChasing Aurora’s visuals are truly striking, and one of the best features of the game itself. The environments, inspired by the Austrian Alps, look fantastic on a high definition screen, while the birds’ movements are a pleasure to watch. The game’s soundtrack provides a great accompaniment to the on-screen beauty, proving that you don’t need to be a large studio to produce a wonderful piece of art.

Chasing Aurora is a visual marvel and the multiplayer-focused approach sets it aside from many other titles available on the Wii U, but it is can also be one of its biggest problems for some. The title is enjoyable to play, but the enjoyment primarily correlates to the amount of people you have playing it. Broken Rules has tried to tread unusual ground here, which has resulted in a mixed blessing. Regardless, it is a strong offering from an independent developer with a lot of hope.

N-Europe Final Verdict

If you have friends around often, Chasing Aurora is a great addition to your collection. It is still enjoyable alone, but definitely made better in the company of friends.

  • Gameplay3
  • Playability4
  • Visuals5
  • Audio5
  • Lifespan3
Final Score



Wonderful visuals and audio
Fun with friends
Requires skilled control, rather than button mashing


Limited single player mode
Need five people to get maximum enjoyment

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