Summer in Mara

  • Genres : RPG, Action
  • Publishers : Chibig
  • Developers : Chibig
  • Players : 1
  • Consoles : Nintendo Switch
  • Languages : British English, French, German, Spanish, Russian, Canadian French, Brazilian Portuguese, American English
  • Release date : June 16, 2020

Summer in Mara is a little adventure game including the self-management of one’s basic needs. That is to say the cultivation of the fields, breeding, cooking, crafting, etc.

I first saw this game during an Indie Direct. When I saw the pictures and listened to a few music notes of the trailer, I had the game in mind from that moment on with a feeling of freshness. So I placed it in my wish list and since June 16th moved on the island of Mara.

Discovery of the game

You play Kao, a kind little girl but with quite the temperament. She lives on an island with her adoptive grand-mother, Yaya. Yaya is going to teach to Koa all what there is to know in order to leave peacefully on the island and take care of it: live in harmony with the nature, but also the other inhabitants of Mara. As you might have understood, it is there a tutorial phase of the game that teach you the basis of the game. I am not going to hide it, this phase is long, but skilfully inserted in the heart of the story. It is after 1h30 to 2h, that you will have the knowledge required to launch yourself in this adventure.

There are many quests and they will allow you to go forward in the game and give you objectives. Even if they seem a little fastidious, they lay out the basis of the game and allow Koa to learn new things. You will quickly get in sync with the rhythm of the game in order to fill in multiple quests at the same time and make your trips from island to island profitable.

 

Each quest corresponds to the personality of the person giving you this quest: the quests will be linked to cooking, selling, art… They will force you to be curious of everything and not hesitate to explore your island and the surroundings to discover all its secrets. The exploration is cool and it really is at the heart of the game, but I would have liked to have a better visibility of the destination and quests…

I passed thrice by one of the characters, because I hadn’t seen it, I turned in circles during 10 minutes before finding the correct place to build the mine… generally speaking I was really lucky to find some of those places the first time on. But… it is in a way part of the game… I find those little struggles to find the correct characters or places go perfectly well with the speedy personality of Koa. Furthermore, they accentuate the exploration side of the game… I ended up by having a little journal with my different finds! And it’s amazing, I really had the feeling to be in holiday! And to have gone myself on an adventure.

A game based on the nature and help

Summer in Mara is a refreshing title that through the story of Koa invites us to take care of a fragile nature, but also of the people around us. A strong message in our current society.

Koa is an adorable young girl with quite the temperament and that thanks to her grand-mother who has an enormous heart and a positive curiosity for everything. I find her super endearing and I love her reactions toward the other characters. She is such a cutie by getting angry at a moment’s notice and going back to her soft persona the second after!

She will, step by step, by helping the people around her make her dream come true and explore all the islands of Mara.

Your main tasks will consist in cultivating vegetables, gathering fruits or seashells, fish, craft objects and cook some meals. From then on you will go back and forth between your island and the main island. Your island will be your playground, the place where you will be able to do almost all what you want. Your little paradise

Each of the completed quests will bring you new things and improve your link with the characters that you will help. Those characters are each more attaching than the other!

Even though the quests are a little repetitive, the game is cute, really nicely done and addictive! Each character of the game has its own personality and I ended up by being attached to each of them. I also like Koa more and more, because she grows up little by little and her judgement becomes more just over time.

Little by little, Koa, gets new craftsmanship and cooking recipes, she will also be able to travel further away, upgrade her island and be of “more important service” to the inhabitants of Mara. The services are more adult like!

The progression of the game is on all levels and it makes it even more addictive!

Conclusion

At the time when I am writing this test, I still haven’t finished the game and I already spent 15 hours on it. I play in segments of 1h30 and 2h and honestly it relaxes me a lot! It’s a true pleasure to be able to escape to Mara. The characters are endearing, the story is cute, the scenery has a holiday feeling and the tranquil gameplay really invites to resting and chill time. I was scare on a management of the energy and hunger gauges, but it is totally manageable and well calibrated for the game. I love this type of game in which I have no frustration, but at the opposite always feeling as I am progressing. It is really nice!

I also found the soundtrack on Deezer to continue relaxing myself while I work on the blog or from home. Anyways, I love this game and for only 20ish euros, I can vividly recommend it.