Burly Men at Sea is a lesson in simple elegance and whimsical storytelling. Almost more of an experience than a game, it's intended to be enjoyed, soaked in, rather than beaten. This short yet fantastic tittle is a fantastic addition to the Switch lineup, and a must-play for everyone's inner child.
I feel like I’m misleading readers by using the word game or play because really, this is closer to a visual novel or a comic book in motion. I created bonds with those on the screen, I laughed, I gasped in shock and I missed the sense of the game when I wasn’t within the world. Burly Men at Sea is very much a folktale exploration of the world and relationships that surround us.
Burly Men at Sea is a charming little adventure that gamers of any age will enjoy. The limited interactivity may put off some people, but this is an adventure full of whimsy and humour that I can fully recommend.
While it might not offer that much in terms of player agency, Burly Men at Sea more than makes up for it with buckets of charm, wit and affable Scandinavian storytelling. Its playtime sessions are usually short, but with each playthrough recorded like a tome on your virtual shelf, there’s plenty of new characters and encounters to be discovered as you plot many a memory on your very own map.
The game seems to be going for a the journey is the reward theme, but watching the same two endings again and again quickly grows tedious and diminishes what came before it. Finding an untrodden path isn’t exciting anymore when you know exactly where it leads. The story, however charmingly presented, lost its grip on me once I became aware each new situation I found myself in would have no payoff.
Burly Men at Sea is a very quaint and surprisingly enjoyable twist on the point-and-click genre, with lovely visuals, an impressive-and-quirky soundtrack, and more replayability than first thought. However, saying that, the whole experience can be breezed through in an hour or two, and it lacks enough real meat to be it a truly satisfying dish, especially given this is the highest priced version on the market right now.
SummaryBurly Men at Sea is a folktale about a trio of large, bearded fishermen who step away from the ordinary to seek adventure. Set in early 20th-century Scandinavia, the game's story branches through a series of encounters with creatures from folklore.