Deiland (Switch): COMPLETED!

Set in the same universe as Summer in Mara, Deiland starts out as superficially similar – chop down trees, smash rocks, grow crops – but set on a tiny planet instead of a big sea. There’s no exploration, and you only have a couple of small areas of other planets you can travel to as the story progresses, and also unlike Summer in Mara, there’s combat.

Every so often, baddies will spawn on your little planet and you have to defeat them. If you don’t, they knock you out and nick some of your resources. They’re not hard to deal with, however, and healing is easy – just stand next to a fire for a bit.

You’ll get visitors in space ships, including a few characters who were also in Summer on Mara, who act as both quest givers and shops. Quest are almost always of the form “collect X” or “create Y”, but because you don’t need to travel far, they’re less drawn out as in Mara.

It’s a simpler game than Mara, but it’s different. I didn’t enjoy it quite as much, but it’s still worth playing.

Summer in Mara (Switch): COMPLETED!

At first glance, Summer in Mara would appear to be a Wind Waker clone, but in fact it’s only really similar in terms of graphics and there’s a load of islands you travel between via a little boat. Actually, it’s much closer to something like Harvest Moon, with a bit of farming, some crafting, and a lot of fetch quests.

There’s no peril, danger, time limits or any chance of death – just a nice little story about an orphan exploring the world and meeting a colourful array of characters and doing various chores for them. The ultimate aim is to prevent a race of aliens from sucking the life energy of the planet, but really it’s 95% going to places and making stuff. There’s not even any combat.

Summer in Mara is a fun, relaxing, blue skies game that has a bit too much to-ing and fro-ing (which I found at the end of the game can be reduced with fast travel!) but plenty of character and charm.