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Our examiner, Andy Robertson, first checked The Pathless 3 years ago. It was re-examined by Jo Robertson and updated 3 months ago.
It's unusual because movement and shooting are super simple. Rather than precise targeting the game focuses on timing and fluidity of movement, drawing on the developer's previous game, Abzu. Similar to the connection to underwater creatures in that game, here you also forge a close bond with your eagle companion as you hunt corrupted spirits.
The game stays committed to the focus on character and exploration throughout. There is no map to the large world, so you must gain knowledge and "sight" of the land by reaching vantage points. There's also no game over. Instead of the frustration about losing your progress if the cursed spirits get the better of you, they will knock your crystals out of you, hampering your progress towards future flap upgrades.
Rated for younger players in the US. Rated ESRB EVERYONE 10+ for Fantasy Violence. As players explore a mysterious island, they forge a bond with an eagle companion, traverse landscapes, solve puzzles, and engage in a handful of boss battles with fantasy creatures (e.g., cursed animal spirits, hydra-like monsters). Boss battles can be frenetic, with players shooting arrows, and enemies spewing fireballs, energy blasts, and lava. Combat is highlighted by impact sounds, cries of pain, and screen-shaking effects.
12+ year-olds usually have the required skill to enjoy this game. You need to be able to think ahead and plan your movement. There is also an element of fine-aiming and fast reactions. Some areas also need perseverance to fully explore and find your way forward.
Release Date: 12/11/2020, updated in 2023
Out Now: Apple TV, Mac, PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S and iOS
Content Rating: PEGI 12
Skill Rating: 12+ year-olds
Accessibility: 20 features
Components: 3D Third-Person and Open World
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