I’ve been playing ABZÛ a lot more recently, trying to explore the things I’ve missed up to now. It turns out there is a lot more to this game than I noticed on my first play through. I knew I’d missed a few collectibles, but there are even more secrets lying below the surface of this game.
When you first start a game, you are presented with a title screen. I though that this screen would be the same every time, but it turns out the background is based on your current save. It’s a nice little detail that gives you a little reward for returning to the game.
Swimming in the game is extremely smooth and relaxing, but it turns out there is a little bit more to swimming, especially if you want to move faster. A left click gives you a boost, but if you time it correctly 3 clicks can give you a much greater boost.
Somehow, you just seem to intuitively know when to click. Once you get used to this you can move around even better than before, and launch yourself even higher out of the water.
The Ballet achievement asks the player to “perform a flip when riding a creature”. I knew how to ride a creature: it’s one of the first things you do in the game. I didn’t know that you could ride any creature. I went into the game and spent a lot of time riding as many creatures as I could.
But I couldn’t figure out how to flip. I realised I could control fish when I rode them so I spent ages trying to get them to swim in a loop. It was hard, so I tried doing it with smaller fish. I managed to do a loop a few times, but still no luck. In the end I gave up, and looked at a guide.
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You can find more than one drone in some levels. I thought you could only have one at a time, but even on the first level you can find at least three and have them follow you around.
I also realised that at the end of each level they disappear into the giant doors before you swim through. A nice way of making sure you always start a new level without any drones.
There are several meditation statues throughout the game. For each one you find, you’ll be able to select them from the main menu and meditate without having to play the level again. You also get an achievement if you find them all.
Throughout the game there are various life pools that you can activate to release new species into an area. At first I thought these were the entire point of the game, but it turns out these are a collectible that will lead to an achievement if you find them all.
There are secret shells scattered around that make another collectible that leads to an achievement.
There are three on each level. How do I know this? I missed it on my first playthrough, but the ruins actually show you which ones you have found and how many you have left to find.
There’s even one hidden behind the credits at the end of the game. I had already found this at the end of my first playthrough.
This one isn’t about the game as much as it is about Steam. But when looking at the achievements I noticed you can actually click on the hidden ones to see what they are. Makes sense really, after a game has been released it’s pretty easy to find them online anyway.
There is a small secret area in the last level. If you look for it, you will find a mini-Antarctica, complete with penguins and a sleeping bear!