My brain is so mushy this week that I didn’t even realize it was Saturday — hence the usual Friday post occurring today instead. We still have two days to go until the work week begins for most people, so what’s on the agenda for you folks?
I’m a few hours in to Oceanhorn: Monster of Uncharted Seas, which I have mixed feelings about. On one hand, it’s actually quite good because it blatantly borrows a lot of its gameplay elements and inspiration from The Legend of Zelda series. This isn’t necessarily bad, because I love Zelda. Who doesn’t?
My problem, I guess, is that four hours in I’ve yet to do anything I haven’t already done a hundred times in almost any Zelda game. No matter how much I enjoy Nobuo Uetmatsu’s OST or how charming I find the game overall, I’ve yet to shake the felling of deja vu.
You’re a silent boy who wakes up to find his father missing, obtaining his sword and shield in the process. There’s special items like bombs and a bow & arrow, and even spells. Like the top-down Zelda games, there’s no NYAH-HUYAH-YAH roll, but you can dash for short periods of time. You find treasure chests with heart pieces, to which discovering four of them will extend your life meter by 1 heart icon. You can break clay pots and cut down tall grass for hearts, coins, and item refills, and there’s even a boat to ride from island to island, like in Wind Waker. You can’t manually control said boat, but rather pick an island you’ve discovered on the map and watch as your boat drifts along on its on.
I received a review key for Oceanhorn, so I’ll reserve judgment for my final verdict until I finish it, but right now I’m somewhere between “This is like Zelda, which is awesome!” and “This is TOO much like Zelda that I’ve yet to be excited by anything.”
I also received a review key for Mount & Blade: Warband on Xbox One, which originally launched on PC in 2010. I gave it a shot last night and it was a bit too overwhelming to jump in to on a whim, so I’m going to hold off until I have a few hours free. I’ve never played the PC version, so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. It’s not very pretty, it’s fairly clunky, and there’s a whole lot of text to read, so yeah… definitely not a game to play on a whim.
The Ratchet & Clank remake on PS4 arrived from GameFly the other day, but I’ve yet to play it. I’m trying to chip away at these reviews while doing the who college thing, which leaves little time for things I *want* to play. Not that the games I review are bad or anything, but I use these opportunities to better my writing and help out smaller indie teams that could use a little extra exposure.
I have reviews coming for Jotun: Valhalla Edition, Emily Wants to Play, Oceanhorn, and Mount & Blade: Warband, so there’s definitely a light at the end of the tunnel.
So what about you? What are you playing this weekend?