When I go to PAX I tend to book my days to the brim with appointments but that doesn’t mean I lose the opportunity to uncover some additional gems along the way. Since Spirit of the North is a far more understated title than most you run into I passed it by a few times before deciding to give it a look, and it felt like time well-spent. If you’re looking for action or quick pick up and put down play you’ll want to steer clear. However, if you want to slow things down, feel a little more meditative, and soak in the beauty of the Northern Lights and an Arctic landscape you’ll likely find this to be wonderfully calming. Your goal is to explore, discover, and simply enjoy the ride, and if you’re inquisitive and want an extra challenge there are a fair number of secrets you’ll encounter along the way as well if you seek them out. While the game lacks in visual intensity the beautiful environments do at times tax the system’s rendering capabilities to the point that things can get choppy but thankfully they don’t interfere with the gameplay in the majority of cases. The real surprise is that among games of this kind built around an experience the runtime is longer than average, more than a handful of hours, so there’s also a fair amount of value in the package. If you’re seeking out something you can just sit back and enjoy while letting the stress of life melt out of you this is a fine candidate.
Justin Nation, Score: