The Touryst is an adventure game that was developed and published by Shin’en Multimedia. It was released on Nintendo Switch in November of 2019, PC and Xbox One in November of 2020, then a PlayStation release in September of 2021.
Have you ever wanted to explore tropical islands in search of fun stuff to do and uncover a weird mystery? Well here, you can! As the Touryst, you get thrown in immediately to the game, and when I said immediately, I mean it. Right after the splash screen, the game starts. No explanation as to what’s going on, or why you’re on these tropical islands. Nothing! So what’s the basis of the game? Well these sets of vacation islands harbour some sort of weird secret that you have to uncover, as you break your way into old monuments and steal precious artefacts from them.
I went into this expecting some silly little story. But to find there was almost no story at all, and almost no reason behind any of the activities you actually do, left me feeling sad. The only reason behind it all was “because you can”. Why would you need to beat this one guy’s top score on arcade games? Because you can. What’s the reason for it? Just to take his money. You can fly a child’s drone, and he wants you to do a little race with it. Why? Because he just wants you too. There were so many opportunities to add some silly banter in this all, but there never was any. Do you need reasons behind any silly mundane tasks such as these? No I guess not, but it would add more to the game.
On the other side of the coin though, is a few hours of fun and relaxing gameplay. For the most part anyways. As you explore the islands, the tasks you do, though there’s no reason behind them, are at least fun. From scuba diving to activate a monument, to activating a DJ’s beach side party and dancing in it, I always had a reason to chuckle due to these. But at the same time, some tasks are just absolutely frustrating. Take the soccer activity for example. You have to kick a ball into a specific spot in 3 vertical nets, 15 times in a minute. Sounds easy right? Well the aimer doesn’t help you with the activity. I was sure where I was aiming most of the time, so to get it into the specific area was a crap shoot.
Each island at least had their own relaxing kind of music though. From the jungle island, to the beach party Island where there’s a surfing competition. I was always bopping my head to some of the tunes I heard. Especially when I was scuba diving, as it was magical! You also get the eerie music of mystery when you’re inside of the monuments. These are the big things in the game, as I’ve said, but I hated almost all of them. As you progress the game, you get new skills. Like double jumping, or running, so long as you have the money to buy them anyways. But the platforming was awful. Sure you had a shadow under you to know where you were going, but the controls were way too floaty, and you have to be precise with every jump in some of these sections. I failed so many times in a few, I forgot about all the fun and excitement the other activities gave to me.
The game unfortunately doesn’t last very long. To 100% the game, I was just shy of a 5 hour run time. I knew it was on the shorter side, but with all the fun I had, it did fly by. Except when I was getting angry. But I did enjoy doing all the tasks for each island. Like photographing every monument. Or being the best surfer in the tournament, the game had a lot of different minigames to keep you entertained.
- Lots Of Activities
- Fantastic Music
- Chill Gameplay (For The Most Part)
- No Motivations Behind Anything
- Platforming Is Atrocious
- Not Much Silly Dialogue
I went in expecting a super silly, chill adventure. What I got was close to that. With no silly dialogue or riveting story, there’s not much for the story lovers. But for a mish mash of fun exploring and some wacky minigames, you can’t beat it in the gameplay department. I do recommend this game, but maybe wait until it’s on a good discount. Here’s hoping the sequel brings some good dialogue!
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