Ylands (Early Access) - PC Review

Shape your world

Game Info: (Box Display)

  • System: PC
  • Publisher: Bohemia Interactive
  • Developer: Bohemia Interactive
  • Release Date: Dec 6, 2017
  • Price:$15
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • Genre: Adventure
  • Players: 1 (Online 2-8)
  • Official Website: https://ylands.com/

Who it Caters to

Ylands gives players the ability to create, explore and survive all in one title. Players can try their hand at living of the lands by scavenging for food and resources or go into creative mode and make towering buildings and structures. At any time, you can go from a single player experience to a multiplayer one allowing other players to join you in your adventure. Ylands even lets you shape the terrain to make mountains from small hills! In Ylands you are only limited to what you can think of doing next!

What to Expect

Playing similar to titles like Minecraft, Ylands aims at being a sandbox game with some neat little twists in gameplay. Not only can you manipulate the geographical features of the world but you can even create ships and other vehicles with enough ingenuity. If you’re more geared to survival games, than you’ll be able to test your survival skills in Ylands by living off the land by finding food from trees and living animals as well as mine for resources to make better equipment and gear. Ylands also offers up cooperative/multiplayer modes which can be activated at any time. With a ton of potential and an already large number of things to do, Ylands could possibly become the next big sandbox title on the PC.

Story

There is no story in Ylands. You can choose to be a recently shipwrecked man or woman and try to survive on an island. You could also activate creative mode where you may build whatever you can think of thanks to a wide array of items and materials as well as different locations to use as a base. Ylands offers players a sandbox game with an emphasis on giving players a large number of tools to make their world feel like their own. There is no one way to play Ylands and that means the sky’s the limit!

Gameplay

Developer Bohemia Interactive have been known for their ARMA series and the popular DayZ. Both of those titles have given players hundreds of hours of gameplay and shown how great Bohemia Interactive is in the gaming industry. However, with their recently Early Access game—Ylands—they have stepped away from military focused games and have gone into a Minecraft-like sandbox title. We have sunk some time into Ylands and think we have a pretty good amount to talk about in our review of Ylands.

In Ylands players are free to choose from one of three gameplay modes. They can either choose to play Ylands as a survival title, creative mode which gives them access to all the items and tools in game and an editor mode which allows full creative freedom via thousands of mechanics. It’s also important to mention that either the creative or survival mode can be played solo or with friends/other players. For this review we will break down the various modes and what works/doesn’t work for each. Let’s begin by looking at the survival mode in Ylands.

Survival mode is exactly how it sounds. Players create a character—the Early Access only has a few options for creating a character—and are thrown onto an island with no items aside from their own two hands. You must roam a randomized world looking for food and shelter. Similar to most survival titles, Ylands offers up various ways to scavenge such as mining in dungeons or using various created tools to harvest from the lands. It may seem tired and true in nature, but Ylands goes creative with its gameplay in some very interesting ways.

Ylands has a unique take on permadeath if you die in survival mode. Your original character will cease to be and you’ll have to make a new character but you can find the items left behind by your former character if you make it to the area you died in. If you play it where you continuously change your name, it can actually feel like you’re losing a character and then finding their remains on the island adding a personal feeling to trying to keep a character alive. Equally, unlike Minecraft there are guns you can find and use which is cool as long as you have ammo.

Our main issues with survival mode comes in two forms. The first is at the moment its way to easy to survive thanks to a seemingly endless supply of items to be found and how food items work. Harvesting berries usually gives you a slew of them in one shot and only one needs to be eaten to stave off hunger for some time. Add to that with the fact that items such as trees and stones offer up hundreds to infinite amounts of resources and you’ll never face an untimely death unless you’re running around at night with no light and or don’t have shelter. Hopefully some patches can fix these issues and make surviving a bit tougher but as it is, Ylands offers a nice fun survival mode to explore various lands and make you feel like an adventurer.

Creative mode is where we had the most enjoyment in Ylands as it offers a lot of content. There are literally thousands of ways to create various objects in Ylands such as ships and cars. Similar again Minecraft—which Ylands seems to use a lot of ideas from but so do a lot of sandbox titles—players can fly around, select an item and use it to build to the literal sky. You can even fly off for miles and not find an end area which is pretty impressive for any sandbox title. Ylands also gives players a tool that allows them to terraform the lands to make them higher or wider. It’s a nice twist on the usual method of how to change a landscape without having to blow up everything or stack various items to make faux mountains. With creative mode we didn’t have many issues aside from sometimes overly sensitive creative tools where stacking became sometimes tougher then it should be but we’re sure that can be rectified via tweaking with settings and or future patches.

The final mode players can choose is Editor. Here players have 100% freedom to design worlds from the ground up. There are a dizzying number of tools to use which will allow those privy with map editors and other creative systems a true freedom to make whatever they want in Ylands. We ourselves didn’t mess with this mode too much as we wouldn’t know where to start but we know some gamers out there can use the Editor to create worlds even Bohemia Interactive possibly couldn’t think of.

Lastly let’s talk about the graphics in Ylands. Ylands has a weird blocky/polygon look to it but we here at Honey’s Anime found it to be quite charming. The same can be said of the simple music which is soothing and great for the relaxing moments of walking around for minutes and just taking in the sights. Everything in Ylands looks solid and the water/weather effects are very nice as well. What’s also great is that Ylands won’t make weaker PCs suffer as it’s not pushing the limits graphically and that is important in sandbox titles.

Honey's Gameplay Consensus:

Ylands has a lot going for it as a sandbox title. With the ability to create various vehicles and even alter the landscape you play on, Ylands reinvents the typical themes found in games like Minecraft. However, there is still a lot of work that needs to be done before Ylands can be considered a great sandbox title. The first-person perspective needs to be fixed where you can see your actual items in hand and some of the resource gathering needs to be tweaked to prevent infinite amounts of items to be salvaged from one tree for example. Though this being an Early Access title, Ylands looks really promising and honestly, we here at Honey’s Anime are excited to see what Bohemia Interactive can do with it via future updates and patches. Till then, we only recommend those who love sandbox titles and are looking for a new one to play that they can sink some time into.

Honey's Pros:

  • Large amount of sandbox tools
  • Fun visual aesthetic
  • Seamless multiplayer switch option
  • Multiple ways to play
  • Editor mode for true creative freedom

Honey's Cons:

  • Controls need to be fine-tuned slightly
  • First person mode needs to allow items to be seen in hand
  • Salvaging needs to be fixed to prevent infinite items from being gathered

Honey's Final Verdict:

Early Access games like Ylands can’t be judged too harshly as they aren’t perfected and obviously are work in progress titles. That’s why while we mentioned the various flaws, we don’t mean to say any of these issues are deal breakers as they can all be fixed as developer Bohemia Interactive continues to tweak Ylands. For now, we are very impressed with Ylands here at Honey’s Anime and are looking forward to seeing it completed in the near future. What are your thoughts about Ylands? Leave a comment down below and for more gaming articles, reviews and news be sure to keep coming back to our hive here at Honey’s Anime!

Aaron

Writer

Author: Aaron

Hey everyone I’m Aaron Curbelo or Blade as I’m called by my YouTube Subscribers. I’ve been an anime/manga fan since I was a young kid. In terms of anime I have watched nearly a thousand shows and have read hundreds of manga series. I love writing and honestly was so happy to join Honey’s Anime to get a shot to write articles for such a wonderful site. I’m a firm believer in respect in the anime community being the most important embodiment we should all have. We all love anime and we have varying opinions of series but we should respect one another for those differences! Life is too precious to spend it making needless arguments in a community that should be the shining example of loving an amazing medium. I hope as a writer for Honey’s Anime I can bring you folks some amazing articles to read and enjoy!

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