For anyone who’s wondering why I started a blog mainly covering little games that no one’s heard about, here’s the short version:
- Someone out there reading might enjoy them, and I’d be happy if that happened
- These games kept me sane during times of “I’m too broke to pay for anything not essential”, and I thought I should return the favor somehow
And so the quest continues with “Stranded 2,” a colorful survival game about the life of a shipwreck survivor. You’ve got to manage your hunger, thirst, and exhaustion to prevent your health from decreasing, maybe find a way home once you’ve sorted that out. How hard could it be?
The main points are gathering assorted resources from the island, and turning them into something useful for your continued existence. Branches and stones become hammers, logs make protective walls, and so on. The crafting system can be difficult to learn at first, as you’re selecting items and hitting “combine” until you get something. Stick + stone = hammer? Sure. A branch soaked in water with a string made from cotton for a bow? A little tougher, but still within the realm of what an average player might think of. But would the average player think that you could make a crossbow out of wood, string, 2 different iron items, and a freaking hammer (to assemble it)? I certainly didn’t. Once you understand the game’s logic, it all makes sense, but until then, expect lots of cries of “It’s not working!” from your character as you combine resources at random.
Getting resources will be easy for anyone familiar with Minecraft, though I think this game came first: You attack trees for sticks and bark and leaves, rocks for stones and pebbles, and so on. You can even get resources at a better rate by using a tool, or get a specific resource, like using a machete to get bark off a tree.
Building is a cool concept, but the implementation could be better. By right-clicking with the hammer in hand, you can choose from a list of available buildings to make, with each one giving you more options once built. After you choose a site, a little roped off square will appear for you to add the required resources to. Just one problem- you have to right-click for every single one. Even the starting shelter takes 30 leaves, and it only gets worse from there. The weight limit system is also a pain, as the default limit is too low. While you can increase it (by catching butterflies, oddly enough), it takes a while to get any noticeable benefit from it.
The good news is, at least in Adventure mode, you’ve got enough starting supplies to not starve to death for a couple days. If you can’t figure out how to build a suitable shelter in that time, this game may not be for you. Especially when the journal pops up and informs you ever time you discover a useful resource.
The combat with hostile wildlife is… okay. The lions and sharks and such you encounter aren’t very clever, opting to dash straight towards you, so killing them is just backpedaling and firing off whatever weapons you have until someone dies. That said, there’s a number of amusing little status effects you can apply, such as bleeding, poison, or good ol’ setting things on fire.
Ultimately, it’s an amusing little game that’s makes survival more fun than frustrating. Just be careful of those bits I mentioned above.
The game is available from the developer’s website, linked below as usual.