The Stonecutter is a new type of “game” for the WiiU, if you can call it a game. It’s more of an interactive book from the people at Brave Rock Games. They also did a rendition of Red Riding Hood back in October for the WiiU as well ( You can read about it here. While this is not a typical title for the WiiU im going to try and be nice since its geared towards children, but forgive me. I haven’t had a video game experience like this since the 1990’s.
The Stonecutter is an old children’s tale about a man who… cuts stones. One day while working he comes upon a beautiful mansion, unhappy with his poor lifestyle the stonecutter wishes that he too could live in such a place. Lucky for him there’s a wish granting spirit in the mountain and it has heard the mans wish. Thus starts the cycle of the unhappy stonecutter and his poor life choices. After wishing for a mansion he then wishes to become a prince, then the sun, then the clouds then, something else. I tell ya, this mountain spirit is pretty lenient with its wishes, but that’s none of my business.
The moral of the story is be happy with who you are and what you have, which is a good positive message in todays world. If only the rest of this “game” stood a chance in todays entertainment industry. While the story goes on you will be tasked with making certain decisions for the stone cutter, very few decisions I might add, but I cant tell you how or why these choices effect the story. Sure there are different endings to see but some of the choices I had to choose from were utterly confusing. Like this little doosy in the screenshot below. I just don’t see how if this is geared towards children, why its not more colorful and interesting… or just easy to understand.
The narrator of The Stonecutter reads the text in a very unemotional, unenthusiastic voice. Which some would say is soothing but it was too soothing in my opinion. It made the story seem like it was dragging on, even though it only takes about 10 minutes (Maybe 15!) in all to get through the entire thing. The background pictures you see are stock photos of real life scenery and buildings, while the characters and other things to do with the story are cartoon illustrations. The 2 different styles clash a little bit to say the least, but it wouldn’t be as bad if the drawings were a little more detailed. Also, there are no real animations so that took away from the excitement and adventure of the story.
The only time I can think that your kid would be interested in choosing the Stonecutter over all of their other games on the WiiU home menu, would maybe be when their laying down for bed. You can watch the story on the WiiU gamepad, you also use the touch screen to pick the 3-5 different paths you’ll be choosing for the Stonecutter by tapping them with the stylus. The picture on the gamepad is a bit compact compared to the TV (duh, Kaelyn!), but I mean to the point of it being almost non readable with how small the text is. One more thing is that the story was pretty abrupt. Some other short stories or something would be nice to add extra content.
If Brave Rock Games is going to continue its visual story series on the WiiU then I highly recommend some updated illustrations, some actual animation and a little more interactivity. It would be neat to use the touch screen in a way that would allow you to tap different characters or objects and hear a sound or info about the story. I would have also liked if the narrator got into the story a bit more. I always liked it when people read to me in different voices when I was younger, it helped me visualize things a bit more and I felt closer to the characters. At $1.20 you’re not going to be too upset if you or your child doesn’t end up enjoying the Stonecutter, but I recommend checking out their previous title, Red Riding Hood for $1.00 first, to see if this is the kind of thing you’re looking for.