Lake Review

Introduction

What do you get when you mix a Mail Carrier, a Lumberjack, and a gamer Hotel Clerk with anger management issues? A humble story of keeping the hometown alive in a city-bound girl. 

Review

Lake is an easy and casual game that takes place in the small town of Providence Oaks, a middle-of-nowhere country town that will put church lady gossip over high-rises any day of the week. Even Sundays when there’s no mail running! You play as Meredith, a middle-aged woman who made a promise to her Father that she’d take over his mail route while he and the wife get settled down into retirement. While they’re enjoying martinis in Florida, Meredith leaves her big city job and heads to P.O., her hometown she left over 20 years ago and never once looked back. 

Extra+1

The game takes place over a 14 day period during the beginning of September where everyone from the radio DJ to the local cat lady will tell you is “the perfect time of year” to live in Providence Oaks. Even though it’s been 20 years, living in a town with a population smaller than a classroom has its perks as the locals easily recognize Meredith after all this time, making her and the player feel at home. She does meet some new faces along her travels, including a rambunctious video store owner and a rather less than pleasant hotel clerk, but it’s her meeting with the local Lumberjack that really sets the tone of her role back in P.O. 

Even though the objective of the game is to deliver mail along your daily route, it’s the interactions with the townspeople and the oddly humble tasks they give you that gives this game its charm. Driving across town to deliver a box for a neighbor isn’t nearly as daunting when you only have to drive a few miles to get there, versus other similar games that tend to make you drive to Timbuktu and back. Completing these small tasks also leave a lasting impression on the townsfolk who are more than willing to greet you with a smile from there on out. 

Extra+7

While overall the game is a great experience of country living, it does have a few aspects that seemed to bring down the experience even if just a little. There are plenty of dialogue options for the player to choose from when interacting with the locals (these can range from enthusiastic to just plain rude), but it did feel like if you were looking to be a bit of a brat, the conversation wouldn’t really allow it and would continue on as if you were just being a nice person. There’s a point where you’re interacting with the far from favorite Hotel clerk and he mentions what his job is actually supposed to be, something that Meredith can actually help with, yet there’s no option to further progress that conversation and it just ends with both parties being ever more disgruntled from having to talk with each other. Even some of the salutations come across as extremely rude in text, yet when they’re spoken, it’s almost immediately forgiven and life goes on chipper as ever. I personally would’ve loved to see more consequence with these choices, but I do understand that the game is meant to be a relaxing experience and you’re not quite supposed to be picking fights with the townsfolk. You’re a mail carrier, after all, not an escaped criminal. 

Extra+4

The Achievements in the game are pretty straightforward and the game does offer chapter select so you can go back and clean up anything you may have missed. There are 3 alternate endings you can get, each of which set Meredith on a path to find herself in their own unique way, which I thoroughly enjoyed. It’d be easy for her to want to go back to her job in the city with the opportunities presented to her, but it’s up to you to decide if that’s really what she wants. It’s not a false sense of choice, which is quite welcomed in games like this. The game does include a lot of driving (as should be a given), but also includes an auto-pilot system so if you don’t want to make the drive up the mountain, you don’t have to and can just sit back and enjoy the ride. The soundtrack matches the country theme of the game and while it may not be everyone’s cup of tea, it did add to the experience of driving through the forests and really just made you want to keep driving. You do start off with only 1-2 songs, but as you progress through the game, more songs get added to the playlist, giving you far more options as you reach the end of your time in Providence Oaks. 

Again, the game is incredibly easy-going, so long as you don’t drive your mail truck into the lake, of course. Oh, and be prepared. You’re in a mail truck. They don’t go that fast, but it will still drive faster than all of the other cars on the ground. Classic driving mechanics in a such down to Earth game. 

Rating

Rating: 6 out of 10.

Pros:

  • Easy and Relaxing
  • The soundtrack is very fitting for the theme of the game
  • It does a good job of making you feel like you’re in a good ‘ol mountain country town
  • The pacing is good and even though you’re “working” everyday, it just feels more like cruising around
  • A good variety of townsfolk/ a decent mix of un/approachable characters
  • The feeling of choice is present for the alternate endings
  • Chapter select for easy Achievement clean-up

Cons:

  • The feeling of choice for dialogue options during the actual game
  • The radio playlist starts off with minimal songs which can start to feel repetitive pretty quick, but that gets better as you play through the game
  • You can’t pet the cats

Summary

Overall, Lake provides a calm experience as a country-town mail carrier who went from doing a favor for her Father, to rediscovering where she came from and finally deciding what she truly wants to do in life. If you’re more into a slow-paced casual gameplay, I highly recommend this game. If you prefer a fast-paced action-packed thriller, oh please do steer clear.

If you enjoyed this Review, why not check out some more we have on site.
You can also chat to our writers by joining us on Discord with this link – Discord Invite

Game & Developer Information

Developer Website: Gamious
Developer Socials: https://twitter.com/Gamious
Publisher Website: WhiteThorn Digital
Publisher Socials: https://twitter.com/WhiteThornGames
Steam Store Link: £19.99/€19.99/$19.99

Lake – Official Announcement Trailer

Published by 8bitsofvelvet

Content Creator, Game Reviewer, Guide writer.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: