There are games that, despite their minimalism, although they stimulate the player’s imagination, create really deep atmospheres and experiences. This is the case with today’s title, a game that you can enjoy analyzing on PC here. Make the jump to Nintendo Switch now and the experience couldn’t be better. Today we’re traveling from Berlin, hand in hand with the machine-man studio, to France in the 19th century, today we’re exploring mysterious islands, we’re going with Curious Expedition 2.
The first thing I noticed is its rogue concept. This was much clearer with its predecessor. But here, a few years later, we find ourselves with a strongly guided experience, with a story to be told, the story of one of the greatest expeditions in history. All of this without, of course, losing its essence. History will guide the way and from time to time mandatory missions will appear that will move us forward in our final destination. Even so, the secondary missions or the ones we complete to unlock the main ones remind us the most of their first title.
The thing is simple here. We will travel to an exotic, unexplored place with a clear goal. Whether it is about getting in contact with the indigenous people, discovering a wonderful construction (for example a golden pyramid) or saving a lost missionary. Every time we go ashore in a new area, this will be a mystery that we will have to solve as we proceed. All of this without forgetting that we have a group of people under our care whose sanity will decline over time. That’s why you have to rest, have a whiskey, and most importantly, eat an ounce of chocolate. Everything is for a sane mind.
The development will always be the same. We are in 19th century France, especially in the city of Paris, which is our base. The Eiffel Tower under construction protrudes in the background. We will have a drink and take the opportunity to recruit whoever best suits the expedition. Then we visit the various houses that “finance” our expeditions. Which will rise in rank as we overcome challenges and offer ourselves juicy rewards. We’ll have the secret and aristocratic British club, Thomas Edison’s hi-tech society, and our final house, this one with an Asian twist.
When we’re done, we’ll need to buy supplies: medical equipment, climbing gear, food, alcohol, and even torches and shovels. You never know what we will need, but it is certainly what you won’t buy. When everything is ready, it’s time to go on an expedition.
We reached the island. Our mission will be the one that touches. For example, find a miracle. We will explore and contact the tribe on duty. From humans to lizards to moles and jellyfish. Endless creatures, each more eccentric and peculiar. In the beginning it will be a challenge just to communicate without a fuss. But little by little we will be able to master the language at every meeting, as long as we are interested in its customs and not just use them. Which won’t be that easy at all.
Curious Expedition 2 is constant decision-making where the fine line between success and failure is always present. For example, we can loot a temple, causing the island to collapse and the wrath of its people who attack us as soon as they see us. Or we can steal a fallen elephant’s tusk, whereby these beings destroy us without too much effort. On many occasions I felt like I was playing a board role-playing game. Perhaps because of their constant stops to present events filled with text that are usually solved by rolling the dice. Or maybe because of its unexpected narrative twists. I will never forget the betrayal of my nurse who ran away one night while we slept and took our supplies. There you burn a hideous harpy in hell.
The concept of Curious Expedition 2 seems awesome to me. As with his careful artistic editing, which reminds me a lot of the Tintin comics, he manages to recreate the most varied of situations. It forces us to do the best we can and make us feel like big failures or big adventurers. To be honest, I haven’t found a single one, but on this indie video game. Except the language.
The game comes to us with the absence of Spanish. Which, due to the overwhelming number of texts, is a real problem if you are not fluent in the Shakespeare language. Fortunately, and as an important fact for you to understand how much I liked it. Today we have tools such as Google Translate which, with the simple aim of pointing the mobile camera at the text, do a moderately correct translation in real time. A miracle that was key to avoiding the occasional shit. Like that day, Jules Verne sold me … a bastard again …
Which reminds me of their fight. It’s pretty fun. It could be defined as an atypical turn-based combat as our attacks are determined by colored cubes. Each character represents their different abilities with dice. For example, the blue ones are usually support cubes like healing, shield, or power-ups, while the red ones are geared toward physical attacks and the green ones are geared toward skills (electric shock, fire, or weapons). Without a doubt a system that is not too deep, but works like a charm and brings out the touch of the dice and pencil even more.
Last, and perhaps most importantly. We have to talk about the console that we enjoyed the title on: Nintendo Switch, capable of the best and the worst. Fortunately, this game is one of that selection of totally entertaining games in the Nintendo Hybrid. The title runs really well and despite a very PC playable concept, a great job has been done to adapt the controls to the Joy-Con. Perhaps the most worrying thing is not this, but his performance. Here, too, the stars have lined up and the title is moving really well. The loading screens are a bit long but we have to keep in mind that we will only suffer one to load the map which is also randomly generated. Hence, it seems like a great platform to enjoy this video game to me.
If you had any doubts about the quality of the title or the console’s ability to move it, trust me when I tell you it works like a charm and that it is a great game that has personality and you from the first Minute captivates. A well of hours in which our greatest enemy will be the addiction that causes it and that must be combined with a decent life. A little GOTY.