The Bermuda Triangle isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when a gamer thinks about videogames, but Lost Sea by eastasiasoft is an isometric action RPG that delves into the possibility of what might happen if someone vanishes from the location. As one of eight survivors, the player must traverse a series of tropical islands while fending off enemies; solving puzzles; and ultimately rebuilding a shipwreck to escape the islands and return to civilization.
Lost Sea uses a variety of gameplay mechanics that were inspired by many games, including Atari’s Gauntlet. For example: The environments are maze-like in presentation, where creatures will chase the player until they’re killed. It’s a simple game mechanic that not only works well, but feels a bit nostalgic at the same time. If it wasn’t for the game’s RPG elements, though — the simple combat mechanics would quickly become repetitive.
The gameplay relies on simple ‘fetch mission’ mechanics that involve finding keys to unlock doors; acquiring tablets to open travel to different islands; and killing monsters for XP. Additionally, the player must destroy the various crates located throughout the islands to collect gold coins. These coins are used to upgrade the ship that will be later used to escape. In some instances, the player must locate ‘worker’ NPCs to help build bridges; unlock chests; and to complete puzzles. These NPCs can also be used to carry puzzle pieces, while the player is free to attack incoming enemies and collect items.
When the player isn’t exploring the islands, they can visit the ‘Workbench’ NPC at the dock to purchase upgrades. These upgrades include ‘Player Skills’, ‘Ship Upgrades’, and the ‘Treasure Vault’. As the name implies, the Player Skills menu is where the player can purchase upgrades to enhance their character. Shortly after starting the game, the player can purchase the ‘Sprint’ ability to run faster. There are twenty available skills in all, and they range from Toughness (a skill that increases the protagonist’s health bar) and Dash Attack (increases walk, run and sprint speed) to Fortitude and Leadership, to name just a few.
Combat relies on the basic principles of most hack ‘n slash games — the player must rapidly press X button to attack and then run away to avoid being hit. As skills are unlocked, the protagonist will gain abilities that will make killing the larger enemies (i.e. giants, etc.) much easier. For example: some enemies — like the seed-spitting plants — are difficult to kill because of their projectiles. But once the ‘sprint’ skill is unlocked, the player can avoid these projectiles with ease. The same could be said about the other creatures in Lost Sea: they all pose specific challenges until certain skills are purchased.
Graphically, Lost Sea looks like it belongs on either a smartphone and/or tablet. While the backgrounds are colorful and easy on the eyes, they lack the level of detail seen in most Playstation 4 games. The character models also suffer from the same issue — despite being colorful, the low polygon count makes the overall presentation look chunky and last gen for a Playstation 4 title.
With that said, Lost Sea is an average game that relies on simple, but addictive gameplay that is the foundation for most mobile games. And while it may feel (and even look) out of place on Sony’s next gen console, it somehow manages to work in spite of itself.
Platform: Playstation 4
ESRB: E10+ (Everyone 10+)
Lost Sea Official Website: Click Here
|The graphics look like they belong in a smartphone/tablet game.|
|A memorable soundtrack compliments the action.|
|The gameplay relies on simple 'fetch mission' mechanics.|
|Lost Sea is an average game with some short-term appeal.|