Captured on Nintendo Swap (Handheld/Undocked)

Because the first announcement of this puzzle adventure-slash-social sim, we’ve been conserving our eyes peeled for Lonesome Village. Now that we’ve performed it, we are able to affirm that it requires you to strap on each your exploring boots and your considering cap, but it surely’s additionally a calming sport that, for probably the most half, doesn’t demand a lot from you, aside out of your enjoyment.

This charming launch from indie developer Ogre Pixel brings puzzles and life simulation collectively, and makes them finest mates. Lonesome Village is a cute, healthful sport with lots of the options frequent to our favorite cute healthful video games: vivid colors, pure setting, lovely animal mates, and, after all, a fishing minigame.

It pays homage to some legendary video games that got here earlier than it – you would even add your personal sport of ‘Spot The Zelda Reference’ whilst you play. However anybody anticipating this to reflect a Zelda sport could be dissatisfied. It eschews fight in favour of delightfully calming challenges and repetitive mechanics, à la Animal Crossing and Stardew Valley. All these references are thrilling to see, although they type a really lengthy yardstick. Lonesome Village might not utterly measure as much as these illustrious predecessors, but it surely undoubtedly doesn’t fall massively brief.

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Captured on Nintendo Swap (Docked)

You are taking the function of Wes the coyote when he’s simply arrived at a now-deserted village. As soon as referred to as Ubhora, Lonesome Village was a quaint joyful city earlier than it was annexed by a cult of animals in maroon robes. They invaded the city and trapped its residents in statues in a tower. As Wes, you’re tasked with releasing the villagers. In your pocket is a mystical magnifying glass to seek for clues and converse to Coronya, your spirit information who pops as much as provide you with useful – and typically not-so-helpful – route.

Within the tower, you encounter a puzzle on every flooring, which, as soon as solved, frees a villager and their household. These brain-ticklers begin straightforward however graduate in issue, and are at all times satisfying to finish. There’s a singular selection too, from mazes to sliding puzzles to reminiscence challenges and extra. They may make you scratch your head, however they’ll hardly make you bash it towards a wall. Each few ranges, you’ll return to the village to gather hearts or choices: hearts are earned from neighbourhood quests, whereas providing gadgets are both discovered or crafted with a villager’s assist. Isn’t that so healthful? Defeating the enemy with friendship!

The village’s calming environment is a reprieve from the delicate darkness of the tower. Its lilting flute soundtrack contrasts effectively with the creepy piano and strings that overshadow your puzzle-solving. Take your time right here and also you would possibly even uncover some Easter eggs from different video games too. The play can really feel like two video games – a puzzle sport within the tower, and a life sim within the village – however the group at Ogre Pixel has tried to provide you time in each, with one resulting in the opposite.

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Captured on Nintendo Swap (Handheld/Undocked)

The artwork fashion is all vivid block colors and daring outlines that gave us a success of nostalgia for after-school cartoons. Textural particulars like water bubbles or dappled gentle add to the in any other case easy design, and all the things involves life with bouncy 2D animation. It’s a disgrace, then, that the story is two-dimensional too. The excess of well-designed characters solely has slight variations in dialogue. The plot is fascinating sufficient to maintain you taking part in, but it surely isn’t one thing you haven’t seen earlier than.

Proper now, the sport will not be probably the most intuitive expertise. As a substitute of utilizing the d-pad to scroll by sure menus, for instance, you usually use it to pick arrow buttons on display screen. Switching between instruments is cumbersome, and within the stock menu, we discovered it onerous to inform which gadgets had been chosen. Another points within the sport had been patched on day one – an indication the builders aren’t completed but. We hope they’ll proceed to work on this stuff in future.

However so far as core gameplay goes, it’s clear Lonesome Village needs to be as stress-free as doable. You by no means must sleep or eat, you don’t have a well being bar, the retailers are open 24/7, and the fishing sport requires you to press one button, at your personal tempo. And in case you die – which is uncommon – you reappear initially of the problem with a reasonably puff of smoke. No dramatic screaming! No misplaced gadgets! No GAME OVER!

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Captured on Nintendo Swap (Docked)

This enjoyable, cosy journey is a worthwhile consideration for individuals who beloved chopping wooden in Animal Crossing and fixing puzzles in Zelda (but panicked in fight). It may not fairly match the splendour of its influences, and the menus nonetheless want some work, but it surely’s actually nice to play.


Lonesome Village takes components of life-sim legends and a big handful of Zelda references and wraps them collectively in very cute packaging. It might not have the richest narrative, however it is going to take up and soothe you – even in its brief playtime. Barring just a few drawbacks with participant expertise, particularly round menu navigation, this sport gives up some good healthful enjoyable with out the sweaty button-mashing of fight. For those who’re puzzling over a brand new cosy sport to play, Lonesome Village simply could be your resolution.

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