Stranded Sails: Explorers of the Cursed Islands Gameplay Preview

*Stranded Sails: Explorers of the Cursed Islands developed by Lemonbomb Entertainment, published by Maple Whispering Limited – October 17, 2020 (Xbox One, PS4, Switch, PC)
*MSRP: $24.99 (Steam) –

Stranded Sails: Explorers of the Cursed Islands is a charming and quaint mashing of a farming simulator with some minor survival crafting elements thrown in for good measure. You and the survivors of an unfortunate shipwreck are marooned on a series of islands and the survival of the crew is upon your shoulders.

Unlocking recipes can be tedious as it requires placing the ingredients in the right order. Some of them sound very questionable.

The game features many of the staples found in farming sims such as plowing the soil, planting seeds, watering them, harvesting the crops, and then turning them into delicious (or questionable) dishes.

Leveling up the relationship meter requires you unlocking furniture by giving them gifts and then building said furniture.

You also have some minor crafting thrown in where you can harvest resources and build shacks for your crewmates and then furnish them. Doing so will increase a heart meter which will unlock passive bonuses as you level up the relationship meter. This is basically the game’s progression system abstracted and presented in a different manner.

Once the meter is leveled up fully, you gain passive bonuses. Most of them are worth obtaining!

For example, leveling up the relationship meter of Fiola, who is in charge of farming, will unlock passive bonuses mostly related to farming. Leveling up the relationship meter with Logan, the lumber jack, will unlock bonuses related to harvesting materials and so forth.

Every action uses up stamina so bringing food and conserving your actions would be recommended in the beginning.

In addition to this is some light aspects of survival thrown in. You have an energy meter to maintain and performing actions will drain it quite quickly. Once fully drained, you will faint and return to the main spawn near the main camp. You don’t really lose any items or progress made but you do have to physically travel back to the location you were at. This means you have to plan carefully before making excursions out to the other islands, making sure to bring enough food and not to wander off and get off track of your main goals.

To make up for the energy system, there is a network of fast travel points available.

This is mitigated later with the fast travel system which will allow you to travel between islands as well as travel between mini fast travel points on the same island freely once you obtain some passive upgrades. Other upgrades will reduce energy usage from actions as well.

It is both a little humorous and sad that your relationship meter with your own father starts off very low.

Overall the game is a calm and methodical farming sim. This may be a turn off to some gamers who would prefer a faster pace or something that requires less planning. The game does throw you right into the action and keeps the narrative exposition light and the focus is mainly on the game play.

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