With so many mysteries revealed and bargains offered during the adventurous GOG summer sale, it’s easy to miss out on recent game releases like Daedalic Studio West’s space exploration strategy adventure The Long Journey Home.
The company is a new venture of Daedalic Entertainment which formerly focused on classic point-and-click adventure games, but is now branching off into different genre territory, and it seems that the first game looks extremely promising: a ship fittingly named the Daedalus that is stranded in an unknown galaxy trying to survive and learning the ways of various civilizations and planet formations.
The universe one traverses is procedurally generated which isn’t a particularly new concept in today’s indie gaming scene. Meeting different aliens, trading or completing quests isn’t very original, either. Using different crew members for specific tasks is as old as the Star Trek formula, but if the writing matches good sci-fi, then one could still feel a connection with the starship’s plight, hopefully not falling into the Daedalic melancholy storytelling trap (already indicated in rather exaggerated slow motion cutscenes). So even if the game doesn’t tread new ground in terms of gameplay or plot and character development, it might just show the potential of a new studio proving itself against the adventure game heritage. It certainly has the high production values in sound and graphic design.
The game is now available on PC in digital and retail form (in a beautiful Captain’s Edition). Waiting after the release was already a good thing, as Daedalic included a Story mode that seems to be much more forgiving, making the exploration aspect more important than survival. Tweaks in gameplay with resources being more valuable and effective, more planets featuring Earth-like conditions, and the Lander (that is used for arcade-like planet navigation) being more resilient and fuel-effective, and dispensing with most galactic weather hazards and dangers sounds like a good plan to quiet down the voices of frustration and despair. The soundtrack is now also available to buy separately.
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