Sand – ITNetwork

From the first moments, Sable exudes style in his world and a story he has to tell. Developer Shedworks takes elements of what made Shadow of the Colossus, Journey and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild such memorable and beloved games and puts them in a package that feels completely unique. While there are a few more bugs to be addressed and the unfortunate hiccups after the checkout rush appeared, the overall experience of playing Sable remains exceptional.

Like Journey, the central story of Sable is more of a guide than the goal of the game. Sable is a young girl belonging to the nomadic tribe Ibexii, who will soon embark on the ritual of coming of age in the desert world, known as “The Gliding”. This ritual requires participants to make their own bike and set out to explore the world on their own before finally deciding who they want to be by wearing one of the many masks in the game. While this is the beginning and end of Sable’s journey, the real story is meeting everyone who calls the world home, exploring ancient ruins and uncovering secrets within the remnants of long-abandoned space crafts.

In keeping with Sable’s focus on adventure and exploration, there is no struggle. The game consists of speeding over sand dunes, exploring ruins and solving various puzzles. While it doesn’t necessarily sound captivating on paper, Sable presents his world through the eyes of a young adult who sees for the first time how big she really is and effectively conveys that feeling to the player with his design choices. Whether helping an innkeeper by collecting “bug droppings” for manure, solving a city-wide conspiracy, or collecting Chum eggs (Sable’s version of BOTW’s Korok seeds), each story is filled with heart and personality in a way that makes it hard to leave before we hear everything he has to say.

After completing these small tasks, Sable will earn a badge relative to the task provider. If he helps the machinists, who are the techno-mystics of this world, he will get the badge of a machinist; when he gets three, Sable can take them to the mask maker and get their mask. Some of these tasks begin to reveal Sable’s second story, which is a mystery that surrounds the world itself. The saber inevitably stumbles upon the remnants of space crafts and highly advanced ruins that create an intriguing picture of how old life is in this world and why no one has ever left.

Sable gameplay 3Sable is far from perfect, because a number of errors can be found – such as certain sound signs that occur when they obviously shouldn’t. For example, Sable will race through the desert accompanied by a beautiful soundtrack of the game, only for the loud sounds of the rising temple to take over and then dissipate just as quickly. The camera is also difficult to adjust and has a bad habit of resetting its position, which can sometimes become quite disoriented. After the check-out rush appeared and the desire to continue exploring the wonderful world of the game inevitably reappeared, this feeling was met with the realization that no new preserved statuses had been created throughout the cinematography; the end result is a status save made two hours before the end of the story, so players will want to be aware of this direction in the narrative of the game.

Although it left a sour taste at the time, it only serves as a warning to often preserve the game’s status, as developers are actively addressing many of these launch issues, and these hiccups shouldn’t interfere with Sable gameplay. It has a beautiful story about the ups and downs of growing up and leaving home for the first time, with lots of lovely characters and unique moments that you can experience along the way. Sable with its beautiful design, surprisingly deep performances and comforting music, provides a joyful and inspiring escape that would be a shame to miss.

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