By: Matt Alexander
If ever there were a time to get back to your roots, now is that time. This game is throwback to simpler gaming, when saving the world and collecting coins was all the motivation you needed. “Oceanhorn: Master of Uncharted Seas” is an homage to “git ‘er done”.
First things first about this game: a riveting score from none other than Nobuo Uematsu and Kenji Ito (Final Fantasy series, Saga series, everything good in the world, etc.) will warm your icy heart. That, along with the happy sounds and detailed maps, will bring color to your cheeks and music to your ears.
It’s not just aesthetically pleasing, though. Nostalgize with gameplay similar to Zelda games and puzzles like Alundra, minus the respective annoying princess and hero with an ugly tail. If you squint just right you’d swear you were playing “A Link to the Past”, but now you have better graphics and two decades of regret and a beer gut and a mortgage and alimony and Oh my God what have I done with my life …
Moving on, the game is packed with the style and history of previous action/adventure titles, including but not limited to: sword and shield, arrows, bombs, dinky spells, heart containers, and those walking blob monsters. But to add to the tradition, juxtaposed worlds of magic and robots collide, because this game, like Odell Beckham Jr., just can’t be covered by one (genre). The game, however, does not throw tantrums, though you might when dealing with some of the (actually quite simple) puzzles.
Jam out to “I’m On A Boat” as you travel — wait for it — on your boat between the isles. But don’t worry, there’s no lonely island here, as there are many helpful NPCs. The story of a boy following in his departed father’s footsteps is not too large a focus here, but it is touching. There are also plenty of Bloodstones to collect and levels to gain for the perfectionists.
This adventure is full of boyish charm and rich gaming tradition. Try it out, and don’t be afraid to relive your now-remastered 16-bit dreams. Only $15 at the Playstation store (Lonely Island CD not included).
8/10 Bro Fists (6 + 2 heart containers)