Quick Review: Last Wood (Demo vers.)

Developer: JustUsLab

Genre: Crafting, resource management


Created for a 48-hour jam, Last Wood (or, at the very least, the demo for the game) is a point-and-click resource management survival simulator, currently available for free on Itch.io. An unnamed man and woman are floating on the sea on a 3-panel raft with a lone lemon tree (hey, that rhymed!). LastWood¬†You’re tasked with helping these two not only survive but begin a new life (and new village) while violating the laws of the conservation of energy. It is literally impossible in real life to do what’s being done on this raft: you plant a lemon tree on a wooden panel, and once it’s fully mature, you cut it down and receive lemons and more wood from it than you used to create it. Then, you’re free to use the exact same spot to plant a brand new tree and magically produce even more wood and lemons from nothing. You can also use the space to make a hole from which you can fish, then combine said fish with the lemons and make kabobs (which produce even more food and keep your villagers alive a little longer). You can also devote a raft panel to making a functional fireplace for cooking your kabobs (in case eating straight up raw lemons and fish starts getting tedious). There isn’t an option to build shelter, but your villagers don’t seem to mind the harsh sun or frequent storms, and your only real hazard is losing panels to the occasional hammerhead shark (why the hell is it just eating the raft, though? I’d played enough for the villagers to have babies, and the babies were free to crawl every which way without fear of falling off or ending up as shark chow). Really, the only way to lose the game is to let your villagers starve, but after building enough raft space, and even when I’d managed to birth about a dozen children, running out of food was never really an issue. This game has a lot of potential, and it’s currently in development, so I’m going to keep an eye on it; expect a review of the full game once it’s out.

Pros:

  • Cute art style
  • Simple gameplay and controls
  • Has a lot of potential (the creator just needs to iron out a lot of details)
  • Characters eat automatically, so you just have to make sure you have the food on hand
  • Music isn’t really all that bad for playing the same song over and over

Cons:

  • Characters have to be told constantly what to do; once they’re done with a task, they wander around aimlessly and eat out of boredom (or, survival. Who cares? Mooches)
  • There’s no way to repair shark-nibbled panels
  • Why the hell are the sharks eating the panels, anyway? Here, have a baby; I have PLENTY
  • You run out of reasons to collect wood rather quickly, but collecting wood and lemons are the same task, so you can never stop collecting wood
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