The Shore – Review
Follow Genre: Action, Adventure, Exploration
Developer: Ares Dragonis
Publisher: Ares Dragonis
Platform: PC
Tested on: PC

The Shore – Review

Site Score
6.5
Good: Atmosphere, Concept, Overall creation of the monsters
Bad: Horrid chase scenes, Dips in graphical quality
User Score
8.3
(3 votes)
Click to vote
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Rating: 8.3/10 (3 votes cast)

The Shore came out in February and garnered a lot of attention thanks to its atmosphere and its visuals. The game is clearly inspired by the works of H.P. Lovecraft and does the source material a lot of justice when it comes to the monster designs. We were stoked when we got our review copy and we were eager to explore the desolate island of The Shore but after reaching certain parts of the game we weren’t all that shore about the quality of the game anymore.

Story

When booting up the game, you are greeted with a shipwreck and no sense of where you are. You will be playing as Andrew, a man looking for his daughter, only to be haunted by strange visions on an even stranger island. While uncovering what goes on here, you will start hearing voices and undergo a bigger quest than you had ever imagined.

Overall, the presentation of the story is handled by short cutscenes or snippets of spoken dialogue. The game does shroud its story in a lot of mystery and vague information, for you to speculate on what you may uncover.

Graphics

The Shore looks both amazing as it looks dated. The developer was clearly very invested in designing the occult aspect of the game, ranging from the impressive-looking artifacts to the colossal monsters that you come across along the way. On the flip side, however, we see that the normal assets are a lot less detailed and often feel dated, creating a very stark contrast compared to the monster-like items we just mentioned. Nonetheless, it does still make a good-looking whole, albeit with a lot of rough edges still clearly visible.

Sound

The sound design is fairly well handled. While the music is more atmospheric in nature, it does add to the overall desolate feeling that washes ashore when wading through the different sections of the island you find yourself on. The sound effects are sometimes also quite eerie and again up the atmosphere by a few more notches. The game also has voice acting, which also feels quite professional for a fairly small production such as this.

Gameplay

The Shore starts off as a slow-paced exploration game where you must uncover the secrets of the island you find yourself stranded on. As expected, you start off at the shore to later delve deeper into the mysteries that shroud the place. The first half of the game is very enjoyable as you walk around, interact with many different objects, solve casual puzzles and just enjoy uncovering the story. Sadly, this formula completely changes halfway through the game.

After the aforementioned halfway mark, things turn into somewhat of a hot mess, with very annoying sequences where you are being chased by monsters. While the overall idea and concept of this isn’t something new, or bad for that matter, it isn’t properly executed in The Shore. The clunky controls and the slow movement of the main character make this a very big turnoff when trying to complete these, often resulting in unfair deaths. We feel that the developer is more versed in the other gameplay elements but simply tried to spice things up, which sadly diminishes the overall fun to be had when playing the game. Perhaps these annoying scenes serve as a way to lengthen the duration of the game.

The game can be played with a traditional mouse and keyboard setup, but also with a controller. The latter is actually quite comfortable for the casual exploring segments, while the mouse and keyboard setup is sometimes better for the chase sequences, as it allows you to look around quicker.

Conclusion

Notwithstanding the fact that we are not giving this game a ‘high score’ on our site, The Shore is still a very interesting, original, and fun experience, only dragged down by certain gameplay designs. If the game would stick to the formula of its first half, this game would receive a near-perfect score, but the clunky chase scenes will probably deter many gamers, even those who overlook the clear differences in the quality of assets that build the world of ‘The Shore’. Nonetheless, for its asking price, and if you can handle a few frustrating moments, this one is still very much worth looking into.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 8.3/10 (3 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: +1 (from 3 votes)
The Shore - Review, 8.3 out of 10 based on 3 ratings
Ibuki


Aspiring ninja.

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