Tempest: Treasure Lands by developer Herocraft is an open-world pirate adventure game filled with naval combat and exploration. It offers a large world to navigate through, battle in, and explore various quests.
The game begins with the tutorial explaining the basics of how to play the game, which in this game is very essential. The tutorial presents a lot of information at once, which feels a bit overwhelming due to the variety of menus and features. It mainly focuses on how to battle with other ships which is the most exciting part of Tempest. It glazes over the other intricacies of the game, such as the crew management, cannonball types, trading, and other features of the game which are much more difficult to figure out on your own.
Tempest does a lot of things well once you get into the game. One good feature in Tempest is that it is an open world game and you’re in total control of what you want to do. This is a huge plus because it makes the game more immersive since the player feels like they are the captain of the ship, they decide its fate. Tempest also offers many options for the player to control. An example of this is if you want the game to feel more immersive, you can do real-time sailing and navigate the ship normally. On the other hand, if you just want to progress and reach your destination, you can use the global map to get to places faster.
The atmosphere created in Tempest is also immersive since it has surprisingly nice graphics, though occasionally water and waves clip through models they shouldn’t clip through. Another positive feature that I found useful in Tempest is that there is access to keyboard hotkeys for most of the game interactions. The provided hotkeys help gamers who have a preference over how they game, whether it is the keyboard, mouse, or both.
The biggest con to Tempest: Treasure Lands is the dull storyline which the tutorial introduces, but is never really developed further. A negative consequence of this is that the game feels rather empty since all you can do to ‘progress’ is complete quests that all feel like side-quests due to their lack of importance. The quests end up lacking any of their fulfilling qualities and results in the gameplay feeling shallow.
There are also many confusing features in Tempest. You’re thrown right into the game after the tutorial and it can be a little disorienting since you have to figure out everything the tutorial didn’t explain. This includes the most features related to your crew, ship upgrades, factions, reputation, and much more. There are also the features explained in the tutorial, but not in detail, such as ship boarding, trading, experience, journaling, magic, and generally figuring out all the menus.
There’s a lot occurring during an intense pirate battle, whether it’s changing the cannonball type, changing the angle of the cannons, or just losing sight of the enemy. The downside is that during all of this you must awkwardly use the mouse to swivel the camera around and locate them. There’s also no in game notification that you’re in battle, you can just be sailing and suddenly are in combat, which can be a bit surprising for new players, though it does add an element of surprise and danger to the game. Magic is also featured in the game, but it is so briefly mentioned in the tutorial, that it’s mainly up to the player to figure out.
If you’re going to play Tempest: Treasure Lands, you’ll need to get used to its battling system. Tempest’s combat consists of going around in circles and dodging the enemy’s cannons while also shooting cannonballs at their ship, occasionally having an opportunity to board their ship too. At times, it feels a bit repetitive because of this. You sail a bit, battle, recover, and then repeat in hopes of being able to eventually upgrade your ship to complete the cycle easier. If you like adventure games with a rich, engaging, immersive storyline, then Tempest probably isn’t for you as it lacks a strong story and feels a bit empty at times. But if you like naval combat against other ships, open world games, and pirates, then Tempest is the game for you.