Eastshade is a first-person adventure/exploration game developed by Eastshade Studios. You play as a travelling painter who visits the island of Eastshade seeking out the locations that their mother loved when she visited.
Throughout your time in Eastshade you’ll encounter many of local inhabitants and ask about their lives. You can make friends and help those in need via completing quests. Primarily, the game is all about exploration. There is no combat at all, think Skyrim without the fighting. The landscape is small enough that you’ll familiarize yourself with where everything is. However, it’s big enough to feel like you’re in a vast land. You can forage for resources which can be sold or used for crafting. As a painter you have the ability to create a painting of anything you see, as long as you have a canvas.
The moment I stepped off the boat in Eastshade, I felt like I had been whisked away to a mysterious land. This is mostly due to the exquisite music that accompanies you throughout your time there. Truly, it sets the relaxing tone perfectly. This is one of the most peaceful video games that I have ever played. The world feels big and varied but not so much that it is overwhelming. I learned my way around pretty quickly. Although, navigating to an exact location can get frustrating. There’s a map but it doesn’t tell you where you are and there are no waypoints at all. Still, clearly that is the intention. The creators want you to feel like a stranger in a foreign land and it achieves that beautifully.
Visually, the game looks dated. If you had told me that this was an Xbox 360 game then I’d believe you. It does manage to look very pretty at times and then ugly as hell at others. The NPC’s are all voiced excellently but they look a bit rough. I loved the painting mechanic, it allows you to paint literally anything instantly. There are a good number of side-quests which are what you’d expect. There’s a nice variety but they mostly boil down to fetching something for someone, it does wear thin.
The developers of Eastshade must have loved Bethesda’s Skyrim. So much so that they even included all of those signature bugs and glitches that we’ve all seen in those games. Textures pop in and out, NPC’s appear completely invisible, get stuck and pretty much all of your favourites. I have to appreciate how far the developers of Eastshade went to give you that authentic Bethesda RPG experience. Jokes aside, not great. I even experienced a couple of complete crashes. Thankfully, load times are decent.
Overall, I really enjoyed my time in Eastshade. It’s a really chill alternative to more action heavy titles. Traversing the landscapes with the sounds of nature and that excellent soundtrack never felt dull to me. I’ll definitely miss Eastshade.
Eastshade - 7/10