Shape of the World is not your average game. In fact, I don’t even know if it can be considered a game more so than an experience. You see, Shape of the World is really an exploration experience, one that encourages you to just wander around and take in all the sights and sounds that it has to offer.
Shape of the World is the world that grows around you. The environment and flora continuously flourish and fade as you wander in Shape of the World, a serene and surreal first-person explorer. You’ll travel through dream-like forests, aquatic caves and peaceful shores accompanied by psychedelic wildlife. No ticking clock or hidden perils laying in wait will prevent you from enjoying your journey… Experience a couple of hours escape from work, anxiety and stress.
That basically describes much of what you’ll be doing in Shape of the World. The game is pretty much a stress reliever, a way to escape your busy life and into a world that’s beautiful and serene. The world is colorful and ever changing and one that is not unlike an untouched section of nature. It’s a world where man has no influence and there’s nothing but you and the natural world. This isn’t a world you’ve seen before however for while it resembles ours, the colors scheme is crazy psychedelic and the wildlife is “unique” and different.
- First-person explorer: Unwind as you wander at your own pace in surreal environments that beckon you to explore, hinting at distant landmarks and encouraging you to delve deeper into the woods.
- 4K support: Enjoy the experience in native 4K on PlayStation 4 Pro.
- Play with an organic and mysterious ecosystem: Interact with graceful animals, ephemeral flora, and intriguing monoliths. Your actions will alter the world you discover in vibrant and unexpected ways, leaving you to wonder what will happen with each new path you forge, each abandoned hollow you stumble upon.
- A living world: The forest only materializes as you move through it, and regrows anew as you pass through areas you’ve previously explored. The handcrafted world offers you landmarks and familiar terrain to guide you through to the end of your trip.
- A dynamic soundtrack that responds to the player’s travels: The audio shifts along with the visuals, providing an enveloping aural experience to match your psychedelic journey and amplify your immersion. Listen to a sample of the soundtrack by Brent Silk here: https://brentsilk.bandcamp.com/releases
While the visuals in the game are certainly different and wondrous, you’ll want to pay close attention to the audio as well. Shape of the World is definitely a game where you’ll either want to crank up the volume on your speakers or preferably wear a headset with at least Surround Sound. This is an experience that will take you far away from any stress you might have that day.
What I really like though is that each playthrough seems different. It never quite feels the same each time you load in and of course you just being there affects the surroundings. That’s probably just a trick of the mind though because you will find many familiar areas, but will also be finding something new each time.
Other than just walking around, you can also interact a bit with the animals – mainly just poke them and sometimes making them do things. You can also destroy trees, create trees with seeds, and interact with “monuments” that will reveal hidden walkways that take you to other parts of the map and ultimately other gateways. That’s pretty much it that I can see.
I wouldn’t really say that Shape of the World is a really deep game or a game where traditional gamers would find fulfilling due to the lack of goals or objectives. However, don’t look at this like a game. Look at this as an experience and as something that could possibly bring your blood pressure down after a hard day of work. It’s no different than a relaxing nature hike to get away from it all, it’s just that Shape of the World is virtual and you don’t have to worry about mosquitoes or a possible bear attack.
Received preview code from developer and/or publisher for coverage purposes.
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