The Touryst Review

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Title: The Touryst
Developer: Shin’en
Publisher: Shin’en
Website: https://www.shinen.com/games/game.php3?the%20touryst
Genre: Adventure, Puzzle, Action, Arcade
Platform: Nintendo Switch
Age Rating: PEGI 3
Release Date: 21/11/2019
Price: £17.99 – Rapid Reviews was very kindly provided with a review code for this title.

The Touryst is an absolute breath of fresh air. In a world filled with gun violence, politics, and a need to seemingly be something other than oneself, The Touryst serves to remind us all of the need to enjoy one of the purest art forms around for what it is: an opportunity to relax, unwind and escape. 

If you’ve managed to miss the memo on what The Touryst is and where it came from, it’s that one at the recent Nintendo Direct with those truly outstanding visuals. Now, whilst it’s not common practice to start here, those visuals will be the hook that draws people in and it will be those visuals that will keep people playing. They are stunning. Vibrant. Bold. Delightful. The list goes on.

As the waves washed on the shore during the main menu, it was evident that Shin’en Multimedia were on to a winner. Never before has block-based voxel art looked so good. Even the way the draw distance has been creatively applied to make items come into focus as you get closer is a touch of genius. Fortunately, The Touryst is about so much more than this, but if it wasn’t, props would have to go to Shin’en for the artwork alone.

You are just arriving at the Monument Islands. Want to go swimming? Or rather take a dive into the deep sea? Or do you want to visit the amusement arcade, do some shopping, dance at the beach party? Fancy some surfing? Or will you talk with the strange old tourist and listen what he has to say about these ancient mysterious monuments..

Nintendo eShop

The eShop listing is the perfect description of all that The Touryst is about. Stepping off the boat onto Monument Island, you are free to do exactly as you please. There is no tutorial, no immediate objective apparent, and no reason to do anything other than take in the surroundings. All too often we associate immersion with ultra-realistic, 4K graphics of worlds based on our surroundings, yet Shin’en Multimedia have managed to create a world that many won’t want to leave.

It is inevitable that after some time, the player will stumble across that strange old man and those strange old monuments. The endearing atmosphere of the island and the endearing qualities of the old man will lead you to go exploring, and over the course of the player’s time with The Touryst, they will visit a variety of unique,  intriguing and well-designed holiday hot spots – each with their own story to tell. 

Ordinarily, visuals lose their shine and a lack of direction can become tiresome, but not here. There is an understated beauty to the simplicity of The Touryst, from the requests of the inhabitants at each stop to the relatively small layout of the islands themselves. It is calming, comforting and creative. Shin’en Multimedia had a goal and they ensured that every element of the design was carefully crafted to make certain the goal was met. 

No game is without its fault, and in The Touryst it is the puzzles found in the very much Zelda dungeon-esque moments on each island that cause issue. They are creative and engaging, but the camera angle can hinder progress at times and it is largely frustrating. Especially so when a game is attempting to provide a chilled and relaxing experience, it means that the finer details are all the more important. If the camera had allowed for 360 movement, this would have corrected this. It does feel as though the camera plays a central role in the difficulty of the puzzles, and this is something I think it could have done without. 

There are many parts to The Touryst that could be spoken about in this review, but part of its charm and allure is in the self-discovery of these moments. Experiencing them for the first time is all a part of its intrigue, and not something that we wish to spoil here at Rapid Reviews. One things for sure, you must take the time to explore every little bit of The Touryst – there is so much to uncover. 

Conclusion

Long story short, in the time you’ve spent reading this review, you could have been playing The Touryst, and I implore you to do so…now! It is short, sweet, charming and creative, and it belongs in every Switch owners catalogue – not at the back though! 

Rapid Reviews Rating

You can purchase The Touryst from the Nintendo eShop at the following link, https://www.nintendo.co.uk/Games/Nintendo-Switch-download-software/The-Touryst-1621533.html

About Shaun Hughes

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