Skip to main content

Review: Wavetale on Stadia is a pleasant surfing adventure

Surf's up to save the world.

Wavetale launched on Stadia in a same-day announcement and release. It was revealed by famous actor Mark Hamill during a publisher showcase earlier this month, a tactic usually reserved for more high-profile games like Apex Legends and the more recent Halo Infinite.

In actuality, Wavetale is a short adventure game with mor releaxing combat and platforming. The main draw is surfing through colorful environments and somewhat open waters, which is relaxing without becoming too monotonous.

Wavetale is a First on Stadia title, or timed-exclusive, and will be coming to PC and consoles sometime next year. However, unless you have Stadia Pro, Wavetale is not exactly an exclusive game you need to play now.

At a glance

Wavetale on Stadia

Bottom line: Wavetale is a pleasant surfing adventure that is short, but does not overstay its welcome with unnecessary padding. This First on Stadia release is perfect for those subscribed to Stadia Pro.

The Good

  • Colorful and brightly animated
  • Movement feels fast and surfing is smooth
  • Great soundtrack

The Bad

  • Combat is mindless or easily avoided
  • Might be too easy for many players

$30 at Google Stadia Store

Wavetale: Gameplay, story, and presentation

Category Wavetale
Title Wavetale
Developer Thunderful Publishing AB
Publisher Thunderful Publishing AB
Genre Adventure
Version Reviewed Stadia
Stadia Pro? Yes
Players Single-player
Release Date Nov. 10, 2021
Launch Price $30

Wavetale follows teenage girl Sigrid, who lives on a small island with her stern grandmother. The two have to continually power a lighthouse to keep away a surrounding wall of dark pollution called Gloom. After a giant wave of Gloom plows through the island, Sigrid encounters a shadowy figure swimming underneath the water that allows her to walk on the water. She then goes on a journey with her newfound power to find a way to stop the Gloom from taking over her home and the surrounding islands. Sigrid meets a cast of characters along the way, some with good, bad, or misguided intentions.

Besides the overarching world-saving plot, there is a heartfelt story about three generations of family and the idea that it is never too late to recognize one's own past mistakes. I just wish I could've gotten more of it since Wavetale is not a long game, and can be completed in about 5-7 hours. There is enough characterization within conversations about the times before the war and Gloom to get attached, and most of it happens while you are surfing, the game's main mechanic.

Sigrid can glide on the water between tiny islands in the open areas of the ocean. She has wide variety of movement options with gliding, running, boosting, double jumping, hovering, and grappling. Surfing is the most fleshed out method, allowing you to complete a higher jump by timing it with the top of a wave. A successful jump will make the character glow pink and dive underwater. You can then pop out again at the right time, dive, and bob in and out of the water like a fish.

The pacing is relaxing once you get the hang of the movement.

Traveling like this takes up the majority of the game: going from one major island to the next on a long, straight path of ocean with the surrounding Gloom creating a hallway. Luckily, it's not all open ocean, with ramps and rocket boosts along the way to create a makeshift racetrack. These long treks only happen a few times, but the conversations and thumping soundtrack also hide the length of these trips.

Traveling on land is mostly a series of finding the next platform or object to grapple onto. The grapple is very generous, so you can easily zip through buildings and halfpipes by repeatedly tapping the grapple button. Combat is very simplified with a light and heavy attack, and the dark imp-like creatures only require a few hits to defeat. Most of the combat can be easily avoided unless the objective requires it, and rewards you with currency only used for cosmetic items.

An odd quirk in the game is that the left trigger is dedicated to aim, but there is nothing to shoot or throw. The settings have an adjustable aim speed and accessibility option to freeze time while aiming, but is not used at all during gameplay. The in-game notebook does not even recognize it exists alongside the other options. I was never in a situation to use it, but strange that it is included.

Wavetale is a very vibrant game with colorful environments and gentle or rocking ocean waves. The characters have expressions that remind me of the Squigglevision shows like Dr. Katz, Professional Therapist and Home Movies where the facial features are always moving. It fits the theme of the game to constantly keep moving whether it is surfing to the next area or flying around tall towers.

The pacing is not very manic, but relaxing once you get the hang of the movement. It is satisfying to time your jump to the crest of the wave for an extra boost or smoothly slide through a Sonic the Hedgehog-like platforming section. The game is just long enough that I enjoyed my experience, but I have no desire to return to it and finish sidequests or time trials.

Wavetale: Stadia performance and features

Wavetale on Stadia is a single-player game, and does not use any platform-exclusive features like State Share. As for performance, it ran perfectly fine and I did not notice any stuttering until right before the final encounter. The stuttering was brief even then. Of course, your performance may vary due to how fast and stable your internet connection is.

According to my Optimum connection's Speedtest, I had an average download speed of 266Mbps and an average upload speed of 21Mbps. Google recommends at least a 10Mbps download speed for 720p streaming, 20Mbps download speed for 1080p streaming, and at least a 35Mbps download speed for 4K streaming.

Wavetale: Should you buy it?

3.5 out of 5

Wavetale is a pleasant adventure with satisfying movement and a story with some heart and an underlying theme about man's impact on the environment. However, I can't recommend buying the game or jumping into the Stadia ecosystem just to play it because while the experience was fun, I was not left wanting more or replay it after the credits rolled. It is not one of the best Stadia games, but it is worth it if you have Stadia Pro and a couple of afternoons to easily play through it.

Wavetale on Stadia

Bottom line: Wavetale is a First on Stadia release that is perfect for Stadia Pro subscribers. It is a short, pleasant surfing adventure that does not overstay its welcome.

$30 at Google Stadia Store



Source: androidcentral

Popular posts from this blog

Spotify Q1 beats on sales of $2B with monthly active users up 31% to 286M

The coronavirus may be decimating some corners of the economy, but the impact on the digital music, as evidenced by the world’s biggest music streaming company, appears to be minimal. Today Spotify reported its earnings for Q1 with revenues of €1.848 billion ($2 billion at today’s rates) and an inching into a positive net income of $1 million. Monthly active users (not total subscribers) now stand at 286 million, with paid (premium) users at 130 million and ad-supported monthly active users at 163 million. Ad-supported users are growing at a slightly higher rate at the moment, at 32% versus 31%, Spotify said. Spotify beat  analysts’ forecasts on both sales — they had on average been expecting revenues of $1.86 billion — and EPS, which had been forecast to be -$0.49 but came in at -$0.20 on a diluted basis and $0.00 undiluted. The numbers underscore the positive signals we’ve had from the wider industry. More generally, we have seen a huge boost in streaming media services — includ

Google's new Guest Mode is like incognito mode for Google Assistant

Your interactions with Google Assistant will not be saved when Guest Mode is turned on. What you need to know Google Assistant is getting a new Guest Mode for privacy-conscious users. When it's turned on, the virtual assistant will not save any of its interactions with you. Turning it on and off is as simple as a single voice command. Google this week announced a new Guest Mode for its virtual assistant that's designed with privacy-conscious folks in mind. A simple "Hey Google, turn on Guest Mode" will ensure that none of your interactions with Google Assistant are collected by the company and nor will they be used to 'personalize your experience' — often an indirect way of referring to targeted ads. When it's on, the Assistant will play a special chime to let you know. Smart displays with Assistant will also show a guest icon on the screen. And you can always check for yourself by saying, "Hey Google, is Guest Mode on?" Even with G

Adobe is giving students and teachers free access to Creative Cloud

Your university's IT admin will need to make an application for access. What you need to know Adobe is temporarily making Creative Cloud free for teachers and students. The offer is aimed at enabling them to continue being productive as they work and study from home. Students cannot individually avail the promo, however, as the application for access needs to be made by a university's IT admin. As universities around the world shut their campuses and organizations ask their employees to work from home, many tech companies are making their products available to educational institutes free for use. Google and Microsoft have both made their large-scale communication and videoconferencing tools free for everyone, and now Adobe is temporarily giving free Creative Cloud access to students and teachers. The subscription, which usually costs $79.49 per month, will give affected students and teachers access to the entire range of Adobe's applications, such as Photoshop

Coronavirus tech updates: Twitter removes misleading COVID-19 tweets

The coronavirus has spread to 181 countries around the world, and it shows no signs of abating . The pandemic has proved particularly devastating in recent weeks, with total confirmed cases crossing 2.6 million and fatalities of over 183,000 globally. The virus has effectively shut down all sporting leagues around the world, major gatherings including tech events and music festivals, and closed down restaurants and malls. It has transformed how we live and work, and how we connect with our friends and families. Tech brands are doing their part to assist, with Google teaming up with Apple to build a coronavirus tracking tool . Here's the latest on the coronavirus and how it's affecting not only the tech industry, but also the world at large. April 22, 2020: Twitter takes action against misleading COVID-19 tweets Global COVID-19 cases have crossed 2.6 million, with 74,000 new cases registered in the last 24 hours. With six times as many cases as any other country, the U.