Platform: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Genre: Adventure, Astmospheric
When I first got to play Far: Lone Sails I was instantly drawn in to the world, the visuals and the sound track, it left me with an amazing first impression which to do so at a busy conference where people are constantly walking by or looking over your shoulder is, to me, pretty impressive. I had to play more of it, and as soon as it released I was on it. I actually played through the entire game on my YouTube channel as it was an experience I wanted to share and I’m glad I did, because the whole game was a truly great experience.
Far: Lone Sails takes place in a world where almost all the seas have dried up, humanity is on the brink of extinction and the remaining people are struggling to survive. You play as Lone and set out on a journey to discover if anyone is actually left. To help you move from place to place you have control over a large combustion engine powered vehicle, it’s clunky, it’s creaky but it’s a home of sorts. You’ll need to maintain the vehicle and keep it topped up with fuel as you explore and repair any damage done to it.
I found that the use of colour throughout the game did a really fantastic job of teaching you the mechanics in a subtle way that you don’t really even notice until you think about it. Most of the game is greyscale, but the items, buttons, switches and other important things that you can interact with or use are mostly a vivid red. Now that may not sound like much, or may seem obvious, but when you have a game that has no dialogue and no text, you still need to be able to communicate to the player how to play and through this simple use of red you’re quickly able to understand what to do, or what items are going to be useful to you.
But it wasn’t really the gameplay that sold the game to me, although having to run around putting out fires, or tending to minor damage was still fun and technically the game played very well. It was the sense of solitude in the desolate world, the secrets it held and the wonderful visual style that drew me in. The story was really only hinted at throughout, you’d have to pay attention to the little details to pick up on things, but I liked that subtlety, the un-answered and ambiguous nature of the ending. It was only a short game, clocking in at around 4 hours total play time and to me that was the perfect length for a game like this, nothing felt rushed but it also didn’t drag on either. Each section of the game felt just right, I never felt like I was either stuck on a puzzle for too long, or left trundling along a dead sea bed for an overly long time. It was all just wrapped up nicely in a very well-paced package.
Far: Lone Sails struck a great balance between creating a feeling of being lost, but still clinging to some hope that you might find life. The further you progressed the more those feelings grew until they hit a crescendo of set pieces that at times really took my breath away.
I would recommend the game to anyone and if you want to read our review at the time of launch then head here.