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Metascore
72

Mixed or average reviews - based on 7 Critic Reviews What's this?

User Score
8.2

Generally favorable reviews- based on 13 Ratings

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  • Summary: Carto is a chill adventure game wrapped around a unique, world-shifting puzzle mechanic. Use this power to explore mysterious lands, help a quirky cast of new friends, and guide Carto on her journey home.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 7
  2. Negative: 0 out of 7
  1. Nov 4, 2020
    85
    Carto is adorable. A sympathetic story filled with an infectious enthusiasm for adventure. While it falls very short in several sections, any game that leaves us wanting more is always a good game, after all.
  2. Oct 26, 2020
    80
    Carto is a strong contender for the title of 2020's best adventure. Involved, intimate gameplay and incredible attention to detail make even the smallest islands feel remarkably rich and expansive.
  3. Edge Magazine
    Nov 5, 2020
    80
    In its modest, unassuming way, it's gently profound, too. [Issue#352, p.116]
  4. Dec 2, 2020
    70
    It’s a bit too relaxed at times, but Carto is full of heart and almost impossibly cute, sending players on a warm, fuzzy journey into the not-so-wild blue yonder to discover what it means to be far from home.
  5. Dec 3, 2020
    70
    The short nature of this title may actually be its best aspect. It’s the perfect length for this type of comforting game – best played in a single sitting, with a quick break to grab a soothing hot drink and perhaps wrapped in a blanket. Carto exudes this nice, warm feeling through its simple, enjoyable nature and dainty design. It’s certainly not for everyone and the gameplay isn’t considerably fantastic in a vacuum but it’s something a little different and I’m happy I got to experience it.
  6. Oct 26, 2020
    50
    Carto is a very relaxed game with little challenges that allows its players to explore at their own pace. While the experience is peaceful, the lack of challenge and variety in its puzzles leaves Carto feeling like its missing something from the experience. The characters are fun to converse with and do add a bit more charm, but most of the time they don't add anything actually impactful as a consequence, leading to an airy feel to a game that could have had more weight to it. Despite such a unique world-shifting mechanic, Carto doesn't bring much else to the table, which makes it a solid addition for fans expressly interested in puzzle-solving or relaxation but a game that otherwise won't find much purchase with other types of players.
  7. CD-Action
    Jun 9, 2021
    50
    Carto is cute but shallow. Repetitiveness of its main gameplay mechanic combined with unsatisfying, tedious puzzles made me welcome the end credits with a sigh of relief. [01/2021, p.55]
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 6
  2. Negative: 0 out of 6
  1. May 3, 2021
    10
    Uno de los juegos de puzzles mas hermosos actualmente.
    Lo que mas destaca es la dirección artística y su reconfortante historia.
    Una
    Uno de los juegos de puzzles mas hermosos actualmente.
    Lo que mas destaca es la dirección artística y su reconfortante historia.
    Una experiencia corta, pero que reconforta el corazón.
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  2. Jan 3, 2021
    10
    Adorable game and really a labour of love – Carto it's quintessentially indie: it gots a charming illustrated style and a simple yetAdorable game and really a labour of love – Carto it's quintessentially indie: it gots a charming illustrated style and a simple yet increasingly challenging gameplay, wholesome–fueled characters, and a very nice soundtrack too. That's the word "cozy" made into a game and I wish for more games like this one. If you want a relaxing experience, perfect for adults as well as children, that is the perfect match for you. Definitely a recommend! Expand
  3. Oct 31, 2020
    8
    A girl separated from her grandmother, on a quest across the world to be reunited using the power of map manipulation. That's the basic ideaA girl separated from her grandmother, on a quest across the world to be reunited using the power of map manipulation. That's the basic idea behind Carto, a thoroughly charming little adventure game from Sunhead.

    There's no combat or lose conditions, just a beautifully drawn and animated world that you can shift at any moment using your cartography skills. It's a really unique and enjoyable way to explore, and Carto utilises this ability in ways that keep on surprising. It's such a simple concept, and one that should be easy for any age of player to grasp. I'd absolutely recommend it to parents who are looking for something they can enjoy with their children and solve the puzzles together.

    I really enjoyed the varied cast of characters each with their own little cultures. It's fairly simple, but I wouldn't say that was to its detriment. There's some fun humour here, I loved the puns. It's like a children's story book come to life.

    If you're looking for a game with a similar relaxed feel to titles such as Animal Crossing where you can just lose yourself in a stress-free world for a few hours, you can do a lot worse than Carto.
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  4. Nov 1, 2020
    8
    While the game itself is fairly short, it is a lovely little puzzle game that doesn't overstay its welcome. Carto made me feel happy in a wayWhile the game itself is fairly short, it is a lovely little puzzle game that doesn't overstay its welcome. Carto made me feel happy in a way that most other games fall way short of. It isn't going to keep you busy for more than a couple of days, depending on your pace, but it is a great experience that I'd highly recommend. Expand
  5. Nov 1, 2020
    6
    I always loved looking at maps and I knew the science behind it was the cartography.

    When I first saw the name of the game, I thought it
    I always loved looking at maps and I knew the science behind it was the cartography.

    When I first saw the name of the game, I thought it was a game based on cartography and figured I could learn a couple of things about it in a fun way.

    Sadly, game only uses maps as a puzzle mechanic, not delving into the science itself.

    It was a little bit short, but some of the puzzles were really fun and hard, while some of them are too easy. Originality was there, but only in short sequences.

    I'd say I enjoyed the time I spent on this game.

    Graphics/Art 6/10
    Gameplay 6/10
    Puzzles 7/10
    Story 6/10
    Overall 3/5

    But like other user said, this game is more suited for children, and they can grasp the aspect of directions from this game (like north, south, south etc.) and some other map related informations can be absorbed from the game naturally as well. Other than that, it has a basic grammar, so game can be easily played by A1-A2 English talkers.
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  6. Oct 30, 2020
    5
    Carto is a very child-friendly game, and with that in mind, it can be recommended.

    The characters are bland, any humour is derived from
    Carto is a very child-friendly game, and with that in mind, it can be recommended.

    The characters are bland, any humour is derived from banale puns. The whole tone is painfully and painfully inoffensively 'quirky' and kitschy, and the dialogue is a tedious, unispired, mediocrely written slog to get through -- and does not even offer any literary merit either (no complex or challenging thought or subject matters; and not sufficiently poetic to make up for this hollowness). Any worldbuilding present is weak, and like the story serves merely to justify the little gameplay.

    The core game mechanic is quite original and works fairly reliably in the game's favour, though a number of the puzzles are more reading comprehension tests than actual puzzles, as the solution is fully given by the character dialogues (reading comprehension being an important skill, this is quite fit for a children's game; but very underwhelming to anybody over the age of 13).

    The player is very tightly guided along the preset path through the game -- which again is child-friendly, but also very very stale, and leaves no room for exploration. This would be fine, if the puzzles held up, but they do not quite: Not all puzzles are well-implemented (lack of polish, for a very short game), with some being more nuisant than challenging/even engaging. Carto also seems to run out of own ideas for puzzles, with it resorting to the tower of hanoi. However, the game still offers some very nice outside-the-box puzzles, and builds familiarity with the mechanics.

    The art, environmental sounds and music are amazing, but unfortunately remain pretty windowdressing for a very shallow game.
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