Review | Curious Expedition 2
What would you do if you were the leader of a dangerous and mysterious expedition? In Curious Expedition 2, you get to answer that question as the head of your own journey. The game blends roguelike exploration with turn based combat, which I felt lowered the stress of runs. Borrowing from adventure classics like Indiana Jones and Tintin, you’ll never be without a pyramid or ancient mystery to uncover. But is the Curious Expedition one worth embarking on?
Curious Expedition 2 has a robust tutorial for newcomers, explaining each aspect of gameplay in detail. The most important part of your journey will be maintaining your sanity against the strange landscape. Each move drains a set amount of sanity, so managing it with food and rest is important. In combat however, sanity means little. Instead, you manage health as dice rolls determine your attacks. Some may find the emphasis on dice roll and RNG to be too fickle, but here at least they’re open about it. Overall, the gameplay is pretty solid.
Graphically, Curious Expedition 2 is, in a word, whimsical. While the UI can be occasionally cluttered, you’re never relying on split second decisions. The game’s aesthetic is reminiscent of Tintin comics, which looks great on the Switch. Colors are matte, but vibrant, and the ambient music also pairs with the laid back approach to combat and exploration. The turn of the century setting also works nicely with the gameplay. Overall, the game looks and feels nice to play.
My favorite aspect of Curious Expedition 2 is the organic storytelling. Each run reacts to your input in a very unique way. For example the way you treat the local inhabitants on each trip greatly affects your ability to explore certain areas or locks you out of certain options. Weighing these options and making hard calls can often be rewarded, or punished. While the difficulty can be changed, even the lower options offer a challenge.
On the Switch, Curious expedition 2 runs smooth, as being primarily turn based, frame rate isn’t really an issue. I never ran into any performance issues outside of long loading times. Outside of that, the game feels superb to play in both docked and portable modes. Docked mode allows the colors to pop even more, and the UI felt more manageable on a larger screen.
To conclude, if you want to recapture the feeling of old timey adventure movies, Curious Expedition 2 is a great way to do it. While it can be a lot for a first timer, the experience is rewarding run after run. During my first eight hours with the game, I completed five runs, and barely scratched the surface of things to do.
Final Score: 8 out of 10