Some games are built to be played in short bursts, while others are designed to draw you in for hours at a time. Lazy Bear Games and Tiny Build have released a game that is fully in the latter category. Graveyard Keeper will keep you busy for days as you try to navigate your way through life in the most inaccurate depiction of medieval times that is out there.
It is just a normal day when you are texting your pregnant wife as you are crossing the street. Out of nowhere there are headlights, a screech and then everything goes black. You wake up in a small house the you don’t recognize. Soon you realize that something is very wrong. After speaking with ghosts and a talking skull you learn that you are the new Graveyard Keeper. As the Keeper, it is up to you to keep the bodies moving through the morgue and into the cemetery. To do this, you are going to have to learn a few new skills, become friends with the towns folk, and help out where you can.
The object of Graveyard Keeper is to return to your wife, unfortunately that is easier said than done. To gain the trust of the villagers you are going to have to complete a series of quests for them. Sometimes people will want you to gather some resources, others will need you to prove your loyalty by creating tools or fancy meals for them. You will have to mine for resources, farm, research new technologies, fish, hold sermons and more.
This is not a game that you will complete in a day or two. The quests for each NPC are multistep, and since most characters only appear one day out of the 6 day cycle, this will add even more of a strain to your time. Most of the characters quests are intertwined, so you may start out with the idea of helping one member of the community and soon you are off helping someone else. You must decide if you are going to work on one specific quest or if you will run scattershot over the whole town and pick away at multiple jobs at once.
Game graphics are true 32-bit heaven. With a muted color palette, you will feel like you are in a slightly different world. If you stand still here a tree you will notice that the wind blows the leaves just a little bit. There are even moving waves in the ocean. The music fits well with the scenery and changes with each area of the map you explore. If you sit and play for extended periods of time, the music occasionally randomly shuts off. This can be annoying, but it can make sure that you don’t get tired of the music. Almost all of the characters talk to you, but instead of words they use a series of squawks and squeaks. This isn’t an issue for the most part, but there are a few towns folk that will grate on your nerves.
Graveyard Keeper is available now on XB1 and Steam. There are plans on the game coming out on Playstation 4 and Nintendo Switch in the future. This is a fun and involving game that will always have something for you too do. I should mention that both the XB1 version and the Steam version have a few bugs in them, but the developers have already released patches to address some of them. The fact that they are supporting the game after release is a huge plus. Even with the bugs, this is a game that is worth grabbing.