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Stranded Sails: Explorers Of The Cursed Islands (Switch) Review

by Julia Gomez - October 17, 2019, 9:19 am PDT
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8

A fun farming/exploration adventure game for fans of relaxing gameplay.

You and your fellow explorers are ready to see the world and settle down in a foreign land. But after an unexpected storm, you are shipwrecked. An archipelago with five islands to explore is exciting, but you and your crew are stranded! With the captain wounded in the wreck, it is your job to maintain a camp, feed your fellow explorers, and eventually escape!

This survival adventure game is for the most part a peaceful, serene way to pass some time. There is plenty of farming to do, and growing your garden is so satisfying. As you explore the island, you can find new crops to plant and then harvest them for recipes. The cooking component of the game is interesting. Discovering new recipes requires using trial and error. While this is fun and adds a level of difficulty, sometimes it can be hard to remember which combinations have been tested and failed.

Once you cook yourself some food, you are ready to explore further. Doing most tasks requires energy, and some dishes replenish more energy than others. You must be careful not to run out of energy or you pass out and wake up back at your camp. This comes into play when fighting enemies as well, as energy is used up as you fight and when you are hurt. This makes fights a strategic challenge, because simply hacking and slashing opponents could leave your energy depleted.

On the various islands there are plenty of treasures and materials to discover. Back at the camp you can craft different components from the things you find to help build shelters and improve you temporary home. This makes your fellow explorers happy and gives you a sense of accomplishment.

Along with all of these survival/adventure mechanics, the game follows a loose story structure that gives you objectives. At first, these are very repetitive, but as the game goes on they open up a lot. As you explore the island, you discover more about the mysteries it holds. If you continue to push through the story, you’ll hopefully find a way to escape the island.

Once I became comfortable with the controls, cycling through all the different items in my inventory became effortless. I preferred playing this game docked rather than in handheld mode. A peaceful adventure game like this begs to be played while relaxing on the couch and enjoying the vibrant colors on a big screen. While it isn’t the most gripping adventure, fans of Stardew Valley and Animal Crossing will probably enjoy it.

Summary

Pros
  • Fun story
  • Lots to explore
  • Relaxing world
Cons
  • Sometimes repetitive objectives

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Game Profile

Genre Adventure
Developer
Players1

Worldwide Releases

na: Stranded Sails: Explorers of the Cursed Islands
Release Oct 17, 2019
PublisherMerge Games
RatingEveryone 10+
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