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Lakeburg Legacies Review: A Near-Perfect Match

EDITORS' RATING : 9 / 10
Pros
  • LGBTQ+ friendly
  • Detailed tutorial
  • Eye catching artwork
Cons
  • May be overwhelming for beginners

A PC code for "Lakeburg Legacies" was provided to Zaaz for this review. The game will available on July 20, 2023 for PC.

"A game spicier than your last date's bill," scrolls past as the loading screen plays, leaving us to wonder what that even means. By the end of the game, however, somehow it all makes perfect sense.

Love is in the air with the release of "Lakeburg Legacies" by Ishtar Games. This new game is packed full of game play that will steal your heart as the hours rush by. Not only does this game have it all, but it pushes the genres of management, simulation, and strategy to new heights.

Try your hand at matchmaking as you search for the best suited pairs in effort to create a thriving village. Do you have what it takes to build a legacy for the history books or will it all come crashing down?

Setting the mood

There are a lot of components that go into making a great game, and one of those is world setting. Before "Lakeburg Legacies" even begins, you get a sense of the fun, cute, and silly gameplay that awaits. The tone is by the random sayings that show on-screen while the game loads. These sayings don't just make you laugh, but some provide useful information. For example, "Did you know that? Love does much, but money does all."

Money is just one of the few components of the game that you will need to keep an eye on. Other important aspects include romantic partners, hearts, resources, traits, and stats. For some, this list can be overwhelming, but this is why "Lakeburg Legacies" thrives in its attempt at world building. By adding bits of story breaks with stat-impacting life choices, it keeps the game from becoming stagnant — a hurdle that most life sim/management games face.

Another great aspect of the life choices is that there are a good handful in rotation. These moments include people cheating, divorce, children, first love, and friends with benefits just to name a few. One of the best choices made by the developers was to create a story arc that places players at the heart of everything.

The tutorial is a must

Management and strategy games are not the types of games to just stumble into. One of the things that makes "Lakeburg Legacies" stand out in the genre is that it comes across as beginner-friendly. Not only that, but thanks to the design and overall concept, it feels as if it's opening the door for players who may be new to the genre. For example, cozy gamers might really enjoy the matchmaking and story elements.

That said, while new players may be drawn to this genre, the variety of components might be off putting for first timers. That's why it's so important to play the first or even first few rounds with the tutorial on. This deep dive guide not only breaks down everything you need to know in "Lakeburg Legacies," but it also provides a great foundation for understanding the genre as a whole. Plus, if there is a concept that you seem to be struggling on, you can keep the tutorial on but bypass the parts you don't need by a simple right click.

It cannot be stressed enough how beautifully broken down the tips and information are for easy understanding. As such, it was an odd decision to have tutorial automatically unselected and placed at the bottom of the start menu.

Whimsical Illustrations

Gameplay is an important aspect, but what really makes this game is the graphics. "Lakeburg Legacies" has an adorable art style that adds to the allure of the game. Not only is it eye-catching, but it adds to the whimsical environment that is your budding village. For example, every job has different clothing that automatically changes when a character is assigned a particular role.

It might be a small detail, but it just fits perfectly with the detailed backdrops that make up the landscape of your town. The interior and exterior of buildings, the detailed character sheets, and, frankly, the overall map all provide plenty of opportunities to fall in love with the illustrated graphics. Each character you come across can look vastly different. Some might have blue, piercing doe-like eyes, while others might only have one eye. 

Lastly, if you are an avid "Sims" player, you are probably going to love the graphics for hobbies. These play an important role in the matchmaking process, which is why it's vital that they stand out. Even for being small images, the detail in some of them is amazing.

Wonderfully chaotic mechanics

"Wonderfully chaotic" is the best way to explain "Lakeburg Legacies" when it comes to its mechanics. There are so many small aspects to the game that it easily can go south if you aren't paying close attention.

It's important to keep an eye on production and the town's consumption of items. If one item isn't producing enough or slows down, it can affect multiple other items. It is also important to realize that adding new villagers might also impact your resources. For example, a negative trait someone like "ill-mannered" might mean they need a beer from the inn every 120 days. The solution? You'd better have an established inn. The last thing you want to do is get in a situation where you have needs for a building you haven't built yet.

The number one rule to remember in "Lakeburg Legacies" is that everything is connected. Keeping an eye on production allows you to expand the village and keep your town happy. At the same time, you have to be on top of the different aspirations and skills your villagers have. These not only impact their overall happiness, but their life expectancy and production. People who work together have the chance to create a good, neutral, or bad environment. Managing resources and the development of the town is just one side of creating a lasting legacy.

Let's talk about love

It isn't just enough to build the town — you also need to populate the town. When you are searching for love, there are a few different ways to go about it. As the game plays out, characters have different abilities to interact with each other which might lead to friends, enemies, lust, or love. If there isn't anyone in the town that catches your eye, you can visit the matchmaker to find a love interest from a nearby town, or spend a little extra money to tempt a new character to move in.

No matter which way you go about it, the important thing is that they are compatible. Depending on a variety of traits that are on the character's profile, couples might be bad, average, good, excellent, or perfect matches for each other. It's vital to look at everything, because as time goes on, their connection might change. For example, an excellent match with a +5% affinity is always going to do better compared to an excellent match with no bonus.

Plus, you also want to make sure they work well within the town itself. Ideally, your couple will reproduce, which means any bad traits might get passed on. The last thing you want is a village filled with mean or depressed people. On top of that, maybe you need a specific boost in certain job markets. This means you want to keep an eye on their aspiration and top three jobs.

"Lakeburg Legacies" is a beautifully crafted game that merges a variety of genres together to entice players from all over. With its designs, mechanics, world-building, and overall energetic feeling, this game is a near-perfect match.

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