A point and click game, filled with tales of pirates and treasure, that sees you sailing from island to island? No, this isn’t Monkey Island. It’s Bilkins’ Folly, developed by Webbysoft and published by Armor Games. And while this gloriously pixelated adventure does take many cues from the classics of the genre, it very much marches to the beat of its own drum: a beat that includes tough puzzles to wrap your head around, humorous dialogue and so many pop culture references that you’ll groan under the weight of them. We’re still chuckling at “Grubb’s Shack – stay away fools”.
In Bilkins’ Folly, you take on the role of Percy, a young treasure hunter who’s out to look for his missing mother and grandfather. It’s been some years since they’ve been seen, but Percy remains hopeful he can still track them down. One problem: his ship has just been wrecked in a storm. And so, with his beloved pooch Drayton in tow, off he sets on an adventure that must begin with finding a new ship.
There’s more than just the main quest to follow as you make your way through Bilkins’ Folly. Percy will gather numerous side missions to complete – if you want – each offering challenging and engaging puzzles to get your head around. Maybe you’ll have a clue leading to some treasure. Or maybe you’ll have to help an islander out by finding an important object. It’s up to you if you want to tackle everything Bilkins’ Folly throws at you, but be warned: if you choose to ignore all the side quests, you might find yourself at a dead end. Indeed, early on an item we needed for the main quest could only be obtained by completing a side quest. That’s rather sneaky, Webbysoft.
The nature of the game means you’re likely going to come up against a brick wall from time to time. But the solutions here are never too obscure: you just need to use your noggin and make use of all the tools at your disposal. Percy will find treasure maps and clues and, in order to keep things neat and tidy in your inventory, you can only see the relevant bits of information for the quest you have active. You’ll need to be proactive about checking your menus often, then, making sure you have the right quest set.
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We like that about Bilkins’ Folly: it gives us some control over what we’re doing. There’s no right or wrong order to complete missions, either. But if you’re at a dead end with your current main mission, it’s probably worth spending some time seeing what side objectives you can complete. There’s no telling what helpful things they could uncover.
There’s a wonderful mixture of puzzles on offer. Some are more environmental-based, and since he’s a treasure hunter, you’re going to be equipping Percy with his shovel rather often, hoping that X does indeed mark the spot. Drayton comes in handy too: he’ll sometimes let out a bark as he follows you around, having sniffed out something interesting under the ground. Sometimes it’s trash, sometimes it’s valuable. That’s the nature of treasure hunting.
Other puzzles require a bit more brain-work: we’ve had word puzzles to decipher, codes to crack and more. Even picking a lock requires a block-placing puzzle to be solved. The variety to be found here ensures Bilkins’ Folly never gets repetitive: every quest brings something brand new to the table.
For fans of puzzles and point and click adventures, there’s so much to love in Bilkins’ Folly. Sure, it may leave you stumped from time to time, but its charming pixel art and lovable characters are enough to keep you invested. With a solid sense of progression, plenty of islands to explore and so much content to sink your teeth into, it’s a must-play for any wannabe treasure hunter.