Signs of the Sojourner – Review
Follow Genre: Deck building, Visual Novel, Text driven
Developer: Echodog Games
Publisher: Echodog Games
Platform: Nintendo Switch, PC
Tested on: PC

Signs of the Sojourner – Review

Site Score
Good: Interesting characters, Good story, Interesting gameplay
Bad: Forced to replay to see everything
User Score
(2 votes)
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Rating: 10.0/10 (2 votes cast)

There are many story-focused games on the market, a few of these add mechanics to spice up the gameplay and keep the player engaged. Signs of the Sojourner is one of such games, combining deck-building, symbol-matching gameplay with an engaging story.


The main story of Signs of the Sojourner is a device to justify why the player is moving around. As an unnamed young merchant whose mother has recently died, the player has to travel around the world, interacting with other characters to collect items to sell. There is a sense of urgency to the story, since the caravan with which the protagonist’s mother used to travel will no longer stop at the village if they don’t succeed in making the shop thrive.

Despite all this, the interesting part of the story is not that, but rather the subplots that develop through meeting other characters. One of such plots, for example, is discovering the story behind the protagonist’s mother’s locket.

The world and characters in Signs of the Sojourner are all interesting and fleshed out, making them believable and lovable.


The game’s graphics are all hand-drawn, colorful and vibrant. Everywhere the player may go they will find a unique and distinct design for both characters and towns (except for a pair of twin brothers).

Since the gameplay of Signs of the Sojourner, besides the deck-building, is that of a visual novel, anybody who has played one of such games before knows what they’re in for. There are no animations, using instead different still frames to display the different emotions of the characters.


The soundtrack in Signs of the Sojourner is really, really good. Every single town has a different completely unique song, the overworld map included; no two songs are the same. As always, it comes down to the musical tastes of the player, but the quality is there. There are absolutely no broken tracks, no audio stuttering, or any of the common issues.

There are also several SFX in the game, such as a writing sound whenever a character speaks. These only add a bit of life to the game, without being intrusive or excessive.


The gameplay is a definitely unique aspect of Signs of the Sojourner. It is made up of combining narrative, deck building, and symbol matching games. At first, the player’s cards start with only two symbols, which represent different approaches to the conversation, but as the game progresses several others will be added to the deck.

After every conversation, the player receives a new card, which replaces one of the old. There is no way to maintain the old ones, which later on, once every card in the deck has effects, may come off as more of an annoyance than a help.

Every card has a set of symbols on its two positions, left and right; these can’t be changed or moved without finding a completely new card. To fulfill a conversation, the player has to maintain a chain of matching symbols between their and their opponent’s cards. It often happens that the player will face a conversation for which they have the symbols, but will be unable to match them due to the positioning of these.

It also comes across as an issue that the objective of the game is not “winning” but rather finding agreement with the other character; which is quite difficult when the player has to rely on said character having drawn cards that match theirs.

The number of available symbols can also become a problem. If a deck is spread too thin to include a lot, the player will have problems finding the matching cards. This problem is only accentuated by one of the other mechanics of the game, fatigue.

As the player moves from town to town in the map, they gain fatigue cards, these are playable but unable to match, causing two automatic fails if played. The only way to remove fatigue is either by going back to the starting town or by random events on the road, making it almost impossible to succeed in prolonged trips.

Something the game fails at is on how much it encourages several playthroughs. By giving the story a time limit, the game forces the player to go through everything again if they want to meet the rest of the cast, do other side stories or unlock the achievements. Whilst there is some amount of variation from playthrough to playthrough, it is not enough at all, with only a few characters and the random events changing.


Signs of the Sojourner is a recommendable and enjoyable game. It offers an engaging story and characters, a great soundtrack, and enough content for around 2 to 3 hours without replaying. Despite all of this, it still has some flaws, such as the time limit closing off the available content, but that doesn’t change the quality of the game as a whole.

Personal Opinion

“I had a fun time with Signs of the Sojourner, the art is lovely and the soundtrack really good. My first playthrough was pretty fun, though at the later parts of the game I started getting annoyed by the introduction of two new symbols out of nowhere, forcing me to rework a deck that had been working perfectly up till then.

Past the first playthrough it became kind of a drag though, a lot of the conversations were the same, except in the pair of cases a character changed. The mechanics didn’t feel new anymore either, just the order in which I received cards varied. Last but not least, whenever I failed a conversation I already failed previously it felt frustrating, because I was unable to see what I had missed before without playing through all of it again.

Despite these qualms, I would still recommend Signs of the Sojourner. I had fun with it even if it was somewhat short. This said, I guess it will come down to how it’s priced upon release, a lot of short games make the mistake of being priced for too much.”

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Rating: 10.0/10 (2 votes cast)
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Signs of the Sojourner - Review, 10.0 out of 10 based on 2 ratings

No longer writing for the site, pursuing other things.

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