Steam Library: Yonder: The Cloud Catcher Chronicles

Scenic vistas in an enchanting realm

The online rumor managed to label Yonder: The Cloud Catcher Chronicles as “Zelda+Harvest Moon” even before the game was released. It is partly because you can never have too much of “Zelda,” and the developers know how to promote their product, and partly because our indie adventure really does resemble its distant high-budget relative at first.

In the first few minutes, you unquestionably believe in the fairness of the comparison. The visuals allow it.

A quintessentially small but lively ship with adventurers on board suffers the traditional crash near the shores of a classic island with green meadows, sandy beaches, tall mountains, and, for the complete package, even a snowy tundra. No one seems to have died, but the crew has been scattered all over the place. For example, the main character ended up in some cave.

At the same time, in those same n minutes, Yonder makes it clear that the game before us is still quite unique. After the shipwreck, there is a familiar tunnel-corridor with a tutorial on controls, then our hero finds himself on a pleasant green meadow, and nearby discovers a village where he takes his first quests, completing which enlightens the player. The seemingly serene island – and indeed it remains serene until the very end of its days. Gamers will have to explore every corner of the local expanse, build a dozen farms, construct bridges over rivers, befriend the locals, catch tons of fish, and do a bunch of other useful things. Without killing a single monster or defeating a single boss in the process.

Embarking on a tranquil journey

Fights and brawls are absent in Yonder as a class. The last time your humble servant played such a peaceful game was in the distant childhood. There was one game on NES with Mickey Mouse in the lead role, where you had to run through levels, collect letters of the English alphabet, and then enjoy life and memorize simple words in, surprise, English again. The locations were different, and various wasps and turtles still roamed around them. But they were not enemies, just part of the decorations. Occasionally, they would push you off the platform you needed, but that’s it.

Our adventure managed to be even more peaceful, and even the flora and fauna here are all friends of humans. Ah, studios rarely make good kind games. Even in Minecraft, they introduced creepers, but here we have complete pacifism and bliss.

Exploring a picturesque world

To be honest, for a while I still wanted to get my hands on a piercing-cutting weapon in one happy moment. There is a healthy island, but there are no dungeons with treasures of ancient skeletons. How is that even possible? Where is my checkers, where are my cartoonish zombie paws, where are my orange-lit sandals?

A minute of Manskin confusion passed, it was only worth remembering that there are plenty of monster entertainments, just keep fending them off, and Yonder is almost alone now. The same Harvest Moon series that pushes magical beast-goblins to neighboring farmers in a row. To make mining ore more fun. It turns out, there’s no need to cry over the lack of action, but to seize the rare moment.

On the other hand, if there is no action, what should one do at all?

Nature's serenity and beauty

The nominal main character is tasked with cleansing two islands from some kind of corruption, making friends, and settling in the area. To dispel the unpleasant magical mist, one must collect a collection of island spirits. To collect the collection, one must complete simple tasks. To complete the tasks, one must… In reality, the best thing you can do in the world of Yonder is to get lost in it.

The habit developed over the years of “eating up” all the quests in a particular location and only then moving on only hinders here. In reality, no local quest requires immediate completion. If a villager sends the hero to chop down twenty units of wood, but halfway to the grove you suddenly come across an unknown path, forget about the tree, because it’s time to get lost, wander into the mountains, and suddenly find yourself at the local North Pole.

Catching the right rhythm and not lingering too long in one location is critically important because individually, all the available entertainment in the game is just grinding and boredom. The brightest example is the farm. To fully develop one of the probably ten waiting villages, it takes ten million units of stone, wood, fabric, and all other resources. Plus, you also need to take care of a whole herd of wild animals. By the way, it’s desirable to have two herds of different breeds. Then you need to feed an NPC to death so that they agree to look after the farm. If you set a goal to raise a small dairy farm and not be distracted by anything else, then… I don’t know, it would be easier to delete the game client right away because ahead of you is about three hours of monotonous clicking on stones and trees. Your mind will go crazy from such entertainment.

Captivating landscapes and breathtaking views

Therefore, it is better to first take all available tasks in the area, and then run somewhere where you have not been before. Neither twilight, nor magical spirits, nor farms will disappear anywhere. The more tangled and healthy the ball of taken quests, the more fun it is to run around the map back and forth. And any good from travels will begin to accumulate on its own.

So, while you are running around the north, wealth is accumulating for the completion of “southern” quests, and there is even enough for a couple of barns. By the time you zigzag back to the south, you will unintentionally complete a couple of “eastern” tasks as well. And you will find a secret or two.

Harmonious connection with the environment

In the “Eternal Call” mode, Yonder doesn’t have time to get boring. Everywhere there are discoveries, achievements, and a beautifully crafted world that is simply pleasant to be in. Of course, in the end, endless repetitions of the same simple actions can become tiresome, and there are not an infinite number of hidden corners and paths on the two islands. But by the time you manage to run around the whole area, several hours of carefree travel will have passed. Taking a break from the forced extermination of zombies, vampires, terrorists, and other monsters can also be useful.

Yonder: The Cloud Catcher Chronicles
Prideful Sloth
Prideful Sloth
Release Date:
Editor's rating:
Is it worth playing? (If the score is more than 70%)



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