Wavetale was published on December 12th, on practically all the platforms currently used: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and Xbox Series X / S. It is an indie title, simple in graphics, in narration and obviously also in gameplay dynamics, designed specifically to immerse us – literally – in a submerged world and infested with very non-threatening creatures. In this platformer and (very small) open world, in the role of Sigrid alongside his beloved grandmother, you will have the opportunity to travel the open sea and explore the archipelago of Arenania. During the adventure you will have the opportunity to get to know and help your unfortunate “neighbors” to the best of your ability, from simple fishermen to bizarre pirates, facing placid waters and stormy seas.
The young protagonist is a simple girl whose mother has disappeared and who, in order to get ahead, manages the house and the surrounding land in the company of her grandmother, youthful and ready to keep up. After an unexpected event, Sigrid finds herself allied with a human-like shadow, which allows it to move quickly on the water, from one part of the archipelago to another. You will have to ride the waves, jump and climb old abandoned buildings to defeat the so-called “monsters”. Sparks, which populate the area making it impossible for the inhabitants to live in peace. In the course of our review, however, we will also illustrate the reasons why Wavetale is an interesting title, pleasant to playbut very little impact if tried in its entirety.
You dart, swing, and nothing more
As we have made you understand, even from our introduction, it is absolutely not a pretentious game or one that tries to take new paths, but a project that understands its limits, and which has undoubtedly tried to do the best with what was available to the team. The narration has nothing particularly revolutionary or entertaining, but the side that aroused our interest the most – even before being able to try it – was undoubtedly the gameplay, which somehow brought us back to memory the “old style” of titles such as Raymanbut unfortunately not optimally.
The basic idea is to play in the role of Sigrid, in the open sea, at a fast pace, going from small solitary voyages to new acquaintances among the inhabitants around you. But unlike what we expected, the level of challenge it’s the thing that has us most disappointed, even from the first hour and a half of the game. All the dynamism and curiosity of exploring the map (modest but more than sensible for an indie of this caliber) is swept away by the sudden realization that in Wavetale there is no rhythm, there are no real fights, and there is nothing of particular to really learn to move forward in the game. Which, in a nutshell, turns into a long adventure relaxing, pleasant but really little exciting.
The missing particularities, therefore, are not counterbalanced in any way, and the journey of Wavetale ends up turning into a series of rather repetitive and boring small tasks on the long term. Surfing, climbing, catching monsters and, from time to time, talking to someone from the Island or deciding to change Sigrid’s avatar with hats and clothing of various kinds. In summary, nothing memorable.
Even the graphic and technical sector has left us perplexed, because even if we understand that we are talking about a small title, it has shown us quite a few problems in the Xbox Series version X|S. Little ones bugs and especially frame rate drops they disrupted and annoyed our experience with a rather annoying continuity. Often, jumping up and having the opportunity to see a greater portion of the enchanting archipelago map, we have noticed a greater influx of lag and frame rate instability, certainly precisely due to the difficulty of processing more than a certain amount of data all together.
The Wavetale experience is short, uncomplicated but – sadly – pretty insipid in its entirety. A delicate and rather sweet work, without infamy and without praise. Too bad, because the general idea of the underwater world and the soundtrack impressed us a lot and, we must say, they contributed to a large part of the vote that we are proposing to you.
Wavetale Review (Tried on XBX/S)
Wavetale is a platformer that allows you to travel to the open sea and explore the archipelago of Arenania, in the role of Sigrid and alongside her beloved grandmother who takes care of her. During the adventure you will have the opportunity to get to know and help your unfortunate “neighbors” to the best of your ability, from simple fishermen to bizarre pirates, facing placid waters and stormy seas. It is an unpretentious adventure which, unfortunately, left us with a bad taste in our mouths. The narrative has nothing particularly compelling and the gameplay lacks the dynamism that we would have expected from a first look at the title.