As I played, I kept thinking, Let me love you, as I built so many pylons and tramway poles just to complete a scenario. I played the demo over and over again when it was first released last year, excited for what would come. Even if some of the gameplay feels unnecessarily rigid, I still have a lot of respect for the way this game emphasizes environmental stewardship, especially within a genre that tends to focus on the exact opposite. Despite the roadblocks, that sense of wonder is enough to bring me back into the game’s world.
Teenage Exocolonist rounds out to a moving, challenging coming-of-age story with genuine stakes and exceptional replayability. If you don’t like the way things went — and in early playthroughs, you probably won’t — there’s always your next life. There are more friends to be made, more crises to avert. With 30 potential endings, the options abound.
Like each of the base game’s excellent quest lines, Flux reframed the way I approached my time as a Sleeper, and it once again revolved around that looming question of staying or leaving. This isn’t a spoiler. The game opens by asking: Do you wish to escape, find the truth, or make a life on this lunking station? And as you go about the day-to-day on The Eye, you’ll participate in the station’s many power struggles, and find new ways of organizing. Flux added additional depth to the game, effectively reframing the final choices I’d made during my first playthrough.
Happy Home Paradise is, ultimately, a chance for anyone who favored the game’s home design to dive into it without all of the hassle. It’s also the perfect solution for anyone who has core island fatigue — whether from having an already full island or being unsure of how to proceed with design. It’s also great for anyone looking for a structured way to play New Horizons post update. Happy Home Paradise streamlines New Horizon’s intimidatingly open-ended gameplay so well that it’s made it even easier to chill out. Though it may be presented like a job, it really does feel like a vacation.