I’ve written many reviews on sandbox games, and from Other articles, I’ve written here at EAG you can tell it is my favorite genre. It was recently recommended I check out this indie title “Wayward” by Unlok. From what I read, and saw the game looked great! I was excited to hop right into it and let me tell you, it was much more than I expected.
I hopped into “Wayward” with great intentions, and they were all met. Starting off with the main menu, it’s nice and calming. You have a couple of options besides, starting a new game, and some optional menus for the settings. These other options being; Challenge of the day, which is self-explanatory. News, Changelog, and an About option, which keeps you up-to-date with the game without having to look around the internet. There’s also a mod option which means this title is Steam Workshop friendly to all those modders out there!
Starting off you get to create your own save file, named to your liking, and then create your own custom character. After all that is complete you’re all set to go, just choose either Hardcore mode (a mode where if you die, it’s permanent) or go for a casual mode for those who want more than one chance. Once you’re finally in the game itself, you’re introduced to the startup tutorial (Which is completely optional). It took me about twenty-five to forty-five minutes to complete, and it was helpful. It showed the basics of the gameplay and helped when I was stuck.
As for the gameplay, it felt kind of weird and cool at the same time. I say “weird” because it was just more of a pixel by pixel walk rather than normal walk in a game. It kind of annoyed me at first, but I grew accustomed to it rather quickly. As you walk you have the option to interact with the environment around you by clicking different objects. Options are given such as; Digging up something, picking up an object, etc. As you walk around, enemies will follow you depending on the route you take.
There are also many other things to pay attention to while playing. You have many things to watch out for, such as; Health, Stamina, Hunger, and Thirst. Plus status effects, ones that I’ve run into so far have been; Bleeding, and Poison.
The music wasn’t really too different from other RPG type games and it felt like I listened to the same track twice. But that doesn’t mean this game has bad music, the music was great. I felt it did a great job fitting in for what the developers were going for. The art style of the game looked to be inspired by 8-bit and 16-bit classic titles. The graphics were very detailed and you could really make out what they were trying to go for design-wise.
A Sandbox Nonetheless
Overall, I’d say “Wayward” has the potential for a great sandbox game. If I had any suggestions for what I’d like to see added/changed, it’d be very few. The developers know what they’re going for, and it’s great to hear that they listen to feedback. The only problem I had is that the enemies in the game stay too close to the player, and it can be kind of an annoyance trying to collect materials while trying to avoid the enemies. But that pet-peeve aside, I enjoyed having the chance to play “Wayward” and for sure will be playing some more of it in my free time!
If you’d like to try out “Wayward” you can pick it up on Steam Early Access for $7.99. If you can’t purchase Early Access for the game, you can try out the outdated, but free version over on here! It’s available on Windows, Mac, and Linux.