Jusant from DONT NOD is a new “puzzle climbing game” game from the minds behind the Life is Strange franchise. How does this game hold up to the DONT NOD name? Check our Jusant review to find out!
Jusant is a brand-new action-puzzle climbing game and a meditative journey to the top of a tall tower. Challenge yourself at your own pace, explore different paths, and unravel the secrets from a bygone civilization.
Jusant is the newest release from DONT NOD, which gave us the incredible Life is Strange, and other creative and more out there games such as Twin Mirror, and Harmony: The Fall of Reverie to name a few. This time, we’re looking at a puzzle climbing game, which is exactly what you think it is. It somehow reminded me of Catherine, which is a very different game that somehow feels similar. Weird, huh?
Jusant is a peculiar word for this new game and one that is from the old French, meaning “receding tide,” which fits the main premise for this game, where the oceans have withdrawn, and the area is mostly a wasteland desert that used to be the bottom of the sea. I loved seeing the landscape that was filled with boats and submarine wrecks. Soon after, you’ll slowly be walking through the sands of the sea bottom towards a huge mountain. Once you reach it, you’ll begin climbing it.
The gameplay felt similar to the segments in Uncharted when you are climbing. Pressing the L2 and R2 buttons as you alternate between them will change your hand holding up, which will help you progress further. You’re equipped with a handy rope and up to three wall anchors at once that will help you rest between climbing sessions. As you’re climbing, you’ll be facing puzzles and will often have to figure out how to get to the next ledge.
But that is not all because, alongside the puzzle element, your worst enemy is your stamina, which quickly decreases as you get higher – similar to how The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild handled your stamina meter. You can rest after placing an anchor, but your stamina will not completely refill until you’ve reached a ledge. Managing your stamina will often prove to be a challenge in itself and will sometimes require you to get down to the previous ledge and retry ascending.
As you progress, you’ll also meet a new friend made of water called Ballast. He’ll help you by being able to give you a general idea of the direction of your next objective. He’ll also give you some clues during some of the tougher puzzles and help you figure out the tower’s secrets. I liked discovering new regions as I progressed through the tower, but I’m fully aware of how the mix of climbing and puzzle-solving is not going to be for everyone.
On the presentation side, I liked how diverse the environments are as you progress through the huge tower/mountain. I also liked the available accessibility features, which can help you change some parameters to help you on your adventure. Having accessibility features in a game is always a plus since it means more people can have a chance to enjoy a game.
Jusant has a full trophy list with a Platinum trophy waiting for you. The list includes 6 Bronze trophies, 8 Silver trophies, and 7 Gold trophies. You’ll unlock these trophies as you listen to all shells, read all letters, activate all frescos, complete more than 200 jumps or double jumps in a single game, restore your stamina more than 50 times while climbing, hug Ballast 20 times, and more. Oh, and, you know, finish the game.
Jusant is a new type of experience from DONT NOD that certainly changes the pace of how you explore due to its nature. I liked discovering new environments and finding new ways to progress as I continued to climb. Do know that there are some difficulty spikes that will test your skills, but if you give it a moment and let things sink in, you’ll certainly find the solution. Jusant is out today on PlayStation 5 with a $24.99 price tag.
This Jusant review is based on a PlayStation copy provided by DONT NOD.