Ever remember back to our youth, where you were going through your adolescent phase, rebelling against the world, sitting in your room and drinking nothing but energy drinks? If so, then you’ll probably identify a lot with Paul, the main protagonist of Beard in the Mirror; in a way, he reminded me a lot of Kevin from the infamous film ‘Kevin & Perry Go Large’, from the way he speaks, moves, looks and acts…Call it a hunch, but there’s similarities!
Anyway…Onto the review!
The Beard In The Mirror is a traditional Point & Click adventure game that explores the themes of maturity, coming of age, and of course, finding out exactly what the hell to do! Admittedly, when I first began Beard, I was immensely confused, not knowing what to do at all…Given the nature of Point & Click games, however, I decided to persevere, and eventually made my way through to the magical forest that had manifested outside my door…
This, in my opinion, is where Beard in the Mirror shone the most – The characters in this game are written with a sort of mastery I’ve only seen in AAA games; every single character (Except for Khan, the six-headed Ogre) left a lasting impression on me, from the crazy old man who loved his rocks to the point of defending them till death, to the ever-so creepy and oddly sexual vine spirit, to the charismatic shoe seller, every interaction I had was interesting, believable, and could’ve easily fit in a slightly more serious Monty Python sketch.
Gameplay-wise, you can do everything you can usually do in other Point & Click games, collect items, move around, inspect things of interest, and grab things – One addition to this formula, however, that I was greatly thankful for was the ability to press ESC to skip instantaneously to wherever you wanted to go; it would be interesting to see how this would benefit speedrunners and casual players alike.
Another aspect of Beard that I really did enjoy was the environment art, from dense forests, to the typical teenage bedroom, to wonderful, dark castle corridors, the art direction in this game is really stellar. However, one thing I didn’t necessarily find visually appealing, were the character sprites; whilst they did have a certain charm to them, at times they just seemed inconsistent, blurry and frankly quite unappealing.
The soundrack, too, is hit & miss at best, with certain tracks such as “Skateboard”, that plays in the bedroom being catchy at first, but then slowly….Slowly….It just…Drives you insane. Don’t get me wrong, the soundtrack is lovely, but with the tracks looping every 30 seconds or so, it quickly becomes aggravating. I’m not gonna lie, it did put me off a little, but to be honest it didn’t detract as much as in other games where this is prevalent.
All in all, The Beard In The Mirror is a charming, comical adventure that delves into the morals and themes of growing up, finding your true self, exploring the unknown, and finding out how many cans of Spasm you can drink before your head explodes into a wonderful burst of rainbows and sparkles! Well…Maybe not so much the last bit…
If you’re a fan of Point & Click adventures, fantasy novels, or just want to try something new, then The Beard In The Mirror may be a perfect switch for you…However, if you really do want to shake up your gaming experiences, then I would say venture elsewhere – Whilst The Beard in the Mirror is charming, it is just another Point & Click adventure game, unfortunately.
I would rate The Beard In The Mirror a 7/10, all in all.
You can check out the Steam Page here!