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While it offers a reasonably chill and generally well-designed survival experience it falls short of some of its competition
Among the many genres and subgenres I’ve had the pleasure of putting through the paces on the Switch, I’ll admit that there are some I’m usually less enthused about. One of those black sheep genres is survival games, though thankfully not all of them are as tedious and oppressive as others, the trait which tends to do me in. Miniland Adventure, thankfully, may have some elements like managing your hunger and thirst, but they’re at least just part of the overall package and not something you constantly feel you must manage.What first struck me as a bit odd in the game is that if you choose to first go to the tutorial you’ll somewhat get dropped in the deep end. I do like how different areas of interest are separated out into their little areas, but suddenly being expected to poke through all of the different game systems at once, and not in any dictated order, made it all quite overwhelming. In the end I wouldn’t say it does anything terribly different than its peers in terms of the controls and mechanics of interacting with different critical tools and inventory items, but it wasn’t a very gentle ramping up for the main game experience and I still didn’t feel like I walked away from it understanding everything and ready to go.One aspect of play that feels a little different is that every day you’ll get the opportunity to use cards you’ll receive, each allowing you to position different areas and biomes where you choose. Once you get the hang of the overall game this can be an effective means of grouping different areas for convenience, but at first you’ll go through some trial and error getting to know each biome and perhaps the order you’d optimally introduce them in. As is typical, you’ll start with some pretty primitive tools and some simple raw resources around you to collect and then use to start crafting more complex gear to work with, which will allow you access to further gear and so on.While it all works well enough, I can’t help but compare it specifically to a survival title with a very similar vibe overall called Forager. Unfortunately, at least for me, I found that the general pacing and comparative simplicity of that title made it a bit more enjoyable. However, if you’re interested in a little more survival complexity wrapped up in a pretty unassuming visual package you may well find this to your liking.
Justin Nation, Score: