Nova Lands from Behemutt and HypeTrain Digital is a colorful and chill resource management minimalist experience on PlayStation 4. Learn more in our Nova Lands review!
Nova Lands from Behemutt and HypeTrain Digital is a colorful and chill resource management minimalist experience on PlayStation 4. As your pod crashes into a new area, you step outside to greet what will become your home for the foreseeable future. Before you begin, you’ll first need to select the starter look for your character. There are a handful of skins available by default, with additional skins available to unlock under the Extras section on the main menu by introducing the special codes that the devs drop every now and then.
The controls are simple. You’ll move your character around with the left analog stick. Press the Triangle button to interact. You’ll use the R1 button to extract resources. Once you have a weapon, you’ll be able to aim it with the right analog stick as you shoot with the R2 button. All the resources that you collect will be added to your inventory at the bottom of the screen. Resources are very important since they’ll be used for building a variety of contraptions. Once you’ve collected all resources on the landing island, it will be time to start building stuff!
First up will be a furnace, which will use heat to transform materials into more advanced ones. Once the furnace has been built, interact with it and choose a recipe to, for example, transform wood into charcoal, or build some modular bricks from stones. Once you’ve selected a recipe and added the right resources, the furnace will automatically produce as many of the advanced resources as possible at a steady pace. Since you’re on a foreign planet, you might want to build an oxygenator that can transform water into breathable air!
As you collect more and more resources, you’ll notice that the bar at the top of the screen will start to fill up. The more resources you collect, the more experience points you’ll earn, which you can then use to level up. When you level up, you’ll be rewarded with skill points, which you can use to unlock additional skills. These include examples such as Geologist, which increases how many experience points you gain from extracting minerals – a skill you should unlock as soon as you level up once – or Hot Bricks, which makes furnaces produce bricks 25% faster.
There are many more examples of skills that will allow you to boost your performance in Nova Lands. Skills are split into four different categories: automation, personal, production, and exploration. Automation skills are related to activities that you can have bots perform for you – more on this in a bit. Personal is for skills tied to your character, such as Fast Learner, which boosts experience points gained by 15%. Production will increase the rate at which contraptions will work. Exploration will encompass all skills that allow you to lower oxygen consumption while increasing how many resources you collect.
You’ll also need to use resources to research new facilities and gain access to new recipes that can help you speed things up. First up will be Mass Production I, which will allow you to produce iron and copper ingots. After that, you can branch out into Deposits I, which will allow you to have a deposit area to store items. If you research Explorer Needs I, you’ll get to build a radar to discover nearby biomes, build medkits to instantly heal your wounds, and a workbench to craft important supplies for bots and medkits.
Unlock each of the additional islands around the starting island, and you’ll get to meet additional characters. You’ll first need to help by providing them with valuable resources so that you can help them build their respective station. Take, for example, Camila. She’s a very dedicated individual who can use her heavy hammer and mighty welder to aid you. She can increase the oxygen capacity of your suit by 50%, increase your walking speed by 25%, or even add additional slots to your inventory, which can make a huge difference! If you help out Armando, you could then trade four copper ingots for an upgrade to your extractor so that you can increase the extractor’s efficiency by 25%, which will allow you to work at a much faster pace.
If you’re the type of gamer who likes to 100% games, you can work on completing the different challenges that the game has to offer. These include completing objectives such as producing 100 modular bricks, producing 50 animal scales, building 25 buildings on a single island, having 40 bots working on an island, unlocking 25 skins, discovering 20 islands, researching 20 types of research, producing 10,000 steel, unlocking 17 equipment upgrades, producing your first hypercomputer, and many more. And speaking of completing objectives, Nova Lands has a full trophy list with a Platinum trophy for you to work on!
The list is split into 6 Bronze trophies, 12 Silver trophies, and 6 Gold trophies. To get that shiny Platinum, you’ll need to discover 7 islands, befriend or defeat the large creatures in the game, unlock 25 skins, complete the tech tree on the research processor, complete the museum, capture a creature, produce your first computer module, produce your first steel, produce 50, 1,000, and 10,000 steel, connect a bot to an antenna, and more. It won’t be a short journey, but at least you won’t be missing any trophies along the way.
Nova Lands offers a colorful and chill resource management minimalist experience with an addictive gameplay loop. Things start off a bit on the slow side, which might rub some people the wrong way. But if you give the game a chance, once you unlock some bots and add some automation to the whole process, you’ll quickly be jumping from biome to biome as you obtain new resources that will allow you to research new buildings that will allow you to progress further into your journey. Nova Lands is out on PlayStation 4 with a $19.99 price tag.
This Nova Lands review is based on a PlayStation 4 copy provided by HypeTrain Digital.