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Video Game Yono and the Celestial Elephants Review
Yono and the Celestial Elephants (2017) is an adventure puzzle game about helping a young elephant restore order to the world. You explore the world and help the characters you meet by solving puzzles going on treasure hunts and occasionally taking on some light combat. It stands out like a good piece of children's theatre, with characters, whimsy and a good helping of fairy tale shadows.

Our examiner, Andy Robertson, first checked Yono and the Celestial Elephants 9 months ago. It was re-examined by Jo Robertson and updated 8 weeks ago.

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Play OverviewPlay Overview

Yono and the Celestial Elephants is an adventure puzzle game about helping a young elephant restore order to the world. You explore the world and help the characters you meet by solving puzzles going on treasure hunts and occasionally taking on some light combat. It stands out like a good piece of children's theatre, with characters, whimsy and a good helping of fairy tale shadows.

Elephants are protectors of this world, born from the stars once per millennium. It's Yono's turn to take up this role and they must bring balance between feudal Humans, undead Bonewights and robotic Mekani. You do this by solving block-pushing puzzles and using different fire/water/air elements to clear a path forward.

As you progress you find four distinct towns filled with people, shops and side-quests. There are also three deep dungeons with puzzles, monsters and a scary boss. Exploring these areas grants you not only new missions but plenty of treasures and upgrades.

Perhaps most surprising for a game that looks as endearing as Yono, is the considerable substance to the story and interactions. Although a game that works well for younger children, it also doesn't pull its punches when it comes to ethical or esoteric topics. Discuss ascetic virtue ethics with the undead, existentialism and freedom of will with the robots, and political philosophy and the roots of power and authority with the humans.

There's also a surprising amount of lore and backstory to find. You piece this together from ancient texts you find that slowly uncover the history of the world, the development of humankind and the influence of past Elephants.

The result is a game that blends The Legend of Zelda with storybook characters. If your family has enjoyed Babar the Elephant or Elmer, then this is perfect for you. While more mature players may baulk at the repetition and puzzle focus, for youngsters or those new to action adventures it's in a class of its own.

Play StylePlay Style

This is an Adventure and Brain Game game with Action, Fighting, Narrative, Puzzle and Traversal elements. This is a single-player game.

 
You can play this game in the following styles:

DurationDuration

Play Time: This game will take between 5 hours and 8 hours to complete.

Age RatingsAge Ratings

Content Rating

Rated PEGI 7 for non-realistic violence in a child-friendly setting or context, mild violence that lacks any apparent harm or injury to human-like characters. This game features combat between fantasy characters and sometimes, humans. Violence found in this combat is unrealistic and comical, as are reaction to it; similar to violence found in most Saturday morning cartoons.

The back story and narrative does take a few darker tones. You can read about bodies piled up on the battlefield in the books of law you unlock. The main dialogue talks about babies being sacrificed. This is all in a Grimms' Fairy style of tone.

Skill Level

5+ year-olds usually have the required skill to enjoy this game. Really young players need to be able to move around the world and work out how to move blocks around to get where they need to go. The game puzzles don't get harder very fast. Not until the very end. There you also face some timing-dependant boss battles. A little help from an older player is useful.

CostsCosts

Yono and the Celestial Elephants usually costs £11.39 to £17.99.
 

Yono and the Celestial Elephants

Steam Store PC £11.39
Switch Store Switch £17.99
There are no additional in-game purchases, loot boxes, adverts or subscription costs.

DetailsGame Details

Release Date: 12/10/2017

Out Now: PC and Switch

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Skill Rating: 5+ year-olds

Players: 1

Genres: Adventure, Brain Game (Action, Fighting, Narrative, Puzzle and Traversal)

Accessibility: 0 features Documented (Tweet Developer)

Components: 2D Overhead, Blocks and Grid

Developer: Hallin Niklas (@HallinNiklas)


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Taming Gaming Book Written by parents for parents, the database complements the in-depth discussion about video game addiction, violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. We are an editorially independent, free resource without adverts that is supported by partnerships.

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