Windbound, tried the new 5 Lives poetic survival

Windbound, tried the new 5 Lives poetic survival


Surfing is salty in this sea The dangers of the mainland Certainties and Doubts Despite their short existence, it cannot be said that the boys of 5 Lives don't like taking risks. After Satellite Reign - a valid spiritual successor to Syndicate (the original of Bullfrog, of course, not the EA shooter) - this team of skilled developers did not choose, as many do, to dwell on a single genre, even going so far as to aim on a title quite at the antipodes of their first creature: a survival. Windbound - this is his name - does not seem to want to place too much side by side with the too many exponents of this kind on the various platforms, so much so that he has already managed to surprise many of those who are usually disgusted by digital survival, thanks to an art direction level and an extremely successful cartoon style (and not surprisingly reminiscent of Wind Waker at times).

Thanks to a remote test we were able to get our hands on the game well in advance, to explore the initial stages, and get used to one of the more advanced stages. Here is what we discovered.

Surfing is salty in this sea

Windbound, as already specified, is a survival in a maritime setting, and as it should be, it opens with the shipwreck of the young Kara, the protagonist, by a huge mollusk similar to a kraken. However, the young woman does not immediately end up beached somewhere: her accident at sea seems to have some meaning, and a mystical portal transports her to a remote island immediately after her apparent drowning.

it Is therefore clear from the off as the work of 5 Lives is not exclusively tied to the crafting and exploration, but also has a narrative progression that unfolds chapter in the chapter provided they complete specific objectives. These - at least in the two chapters we dealt with - seem to correspond with the discovery of some stone columns, giving a strange energy to the pendant of the girl (whose utility at the moment there is the unknown, and unlock other portals into new regions. A formula is not particularly innovative, realize it, and yet the variety in the game comes not so much from the primary objective of the campaign (which may, however, also be ignored in favor of a survival mode in the "pure" that we have not been able to test), but by the need to build a solid boat to travel from island to island, and from the various biomes encountered.

Already, because this is a survival Kara does not collect materials to build huts and various protections, but rather to give form to a beautiful boat schedule is, as we have seen, can easily pass from a simple canoe to a catamaran equipped at all points, with much cooking portable, spurs defensive (perhaps linked to the fighting in the sea that we've never met), and lots of other goodies that are extremely useful. Among the primary uses of the boat, however, there is only movement from one atoll to the next: the game has a management of inventory and anything else that is relaxed, that forces us to often choose carefully the tools to bring forward and brings the containers extras that can be placed on your half to be fundamental to always have what you need.

The dangers of the mainland

One of the reasons why the inventory seems to be always too little, it is the complexity of the inevitable crafting , that not only allows you to build separately the pieces of his boat, but also armor types, weapons , and classical instruments for the recovery of most advanced materials. All of these objects end up in the same menu, and although it is possible to construct bags specialized for certain types of objects (for example, the only food), the diversification of the pieces necessary for the construction of each what, however, makes things difficult. The paraphernalia, however, is not only there for beauty: the various islands are often full of wildlife more or less aggressive, and that must be addressed in order to build some of the goodies to be extraordinarily useful. The 5 Lives then have wanted to create a combat system a bit more complex compared to the other exponents of the genre, that allows Kara to get into position, dodge quickly, and change the weapon without too many problems in the middle of the battle. There are even special powers available to the protagonist, of which we have not been able to discover the origin, but plausibly related to the energy of the columns of which we spoke before.

Only one small problem: at the moment the clashes are rather unbalanced in favour of the distance. Kara can use spears and knives, however, it is always more convenient to build a good bow, arrows, and remove carefully from the distance the fierce beasts that inhabit the various zones, since most of these are harmless until you load short range. We have noticed a certain variety of enemies in the most advanced - including biting fur balls are very mobile, and a creature of the night can teleport - yet it is as clear as on the artificial intelligence of the enemy there is still a lot of work to do, and we hope to see a better-balanced system at launch. Instead valid the general structure, that is immediately understandable (just look around from an elevated position to understand where is better to navigate), and capture both the mystery of the basis for the presence of some interesting ruins scattered here and there, in spite of islands of various biomes to be generated procedurally.

In general? Despite still lacks a lot of cleanup the title there already seems to be pretty solid, and if the background of the narrative and the variety of biomes will endure the blow we could find ourselves in front of an exponent that is extremely interesting of the genre survival.

Despite the survival beginning to be too much, Windbound stands out for its setting of maritime, for the inspired art direction, and the need to explore the seas on a boat custom. It may seem little on paper, but during our test work of 5 Lives seemed to us to be much more inspired than average, and already very solid from almost all points of view. Who knows if this team is relatively young, will demonstrate his talent in this field.


the Setting and the graphic style is very inspired by the Interesting variety of biomes the Background narrative full of potential


Combat rebalance fully, inventory management less difficult it would be beneficial to the general rate

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