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I am going to begin by acknowledging that the only reason I ended up purchasing this game was due to it being on sale for around $8 on the Nintendo Store. When I first heard about The Flame in the Flood I was intrigued, but not quite sold, especially after reading mixed reviews across the internet. After seeing this reduced price I decided now was the time to take a break from my many Skyrim adventures and try and survive in indie studio The Molasses Flood's The Flame in the Flood.


Fast forward a couple hours and my heart is racing as my raft careens through the rapids of this never ending river full of hazardous remains of a society that once was. My four survival elements are all dangerously low: Hunger, Thirst, Warmth, and Energy. I also have a wicked case of poison ivy. My only food source has spoiled and will poison me if I eat it, and the only water I have needs to be filtered before I can drink. I have been playing the game for about an hour, and I must say, things went poorly pretty quickly. While the game does a pretty good job of explaining the mechanics of the game, I was still a little slow to learn how to maneuver my raft to ensure I got the best supplies possible. Navigating your raft through the river is a integral part of your survival because at times there are choices to be made. Do I go left to the two smaller resource caches, or do I paddle hard to the right and stop at the one larger cache? Once you arrive at these small ports and islands along this mysterious and unforgiving river, you must scavenge supplies and make the most effective use of them in order to increase your survival gauges as much as possible before heading back out onto the water. This is the entire dynamic of the gameplay so far as I can tell. It consists of rafting down the river and then scrounging up supplies, and then back to the river again. It is an unforgiving environment with hazards from things like rain and insect bites, to wolves and bears. There are also lots of things to craft that are surprisingly satisfying to use, like the first time you snare one of those cute bunnies that appear at most of your stops along the way, but not all. 

My favorite element of the game is the storyline, which is Dark Souls-ish in the way that makes the gamer piece together some sort of answer to the many questions that they have, with little to no answers actually being explicitly laid out by the game. The world has been flooded and everywhere we look we see indication that it has been this way for quite some time. Rusted out cars floating down the river, along with entire homes and shantys of the former denizens of this mysterious place that has been so devastated by this post-flood of apocalyptic proportions. Through my travels I met an old goggle-wearing, shotgun-toting granny, a pair of feral children, and a mysterious grave-digging recluse. Alongside my trusty canine companion, I traversed the wilderness, stayed alive, escaped the tusks of a wild boar, died of starvation, and did it all again. This unforgiving and unique take on the survival genre makes you sweat and keeps up interest by always keeping alive the chance that at the next stop, just a little further along, you will find a nice warm place to rest and to eat. And then, it gives you dandelions. 


Johnny's score: 8/10  -  Buy it! Especially if it is still on sale!


Entertaining to boot. Easy to learn, hard to master. Always a new game due to item randomization. Exciting. Fun.


Quite difficult. Frustrating. Unforgiving. Raft steering controls can be sloppy(but then again rivers are unpredictable!)



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This thread (and game) slipped by my radar, what a awesome; well written review - not finished reading yet but just want to say thanks for bringing this game to my attention! I just watched a trailer for it and I am intrigued. Going to finish the rest of the review, make a little banner for your review and push it to the homepage to promote it.

edit: woah, suspenseful review. I love the way you sucked us in to your experience first playing the game. I enjoy your style of reviews Jonny, keep it up! This game has surprised me! It's on my wishlist.

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