With Lost in Random, publisher Electronic Arts distributes an ambitious and courageous title. The adventure game is standard food and insider tip at the same time, convincing but not complete, is gloomy and at the same time illuminating - and one of those games that you have to let it take effect, but not to be missed. In our test for Lost in Random, we reveal which strengths the game has and which unfortunately did not succeed.
Sometimes there are those special games that don't grab you right away. It's even more dramatic with Lost in Random: The beginning of the title in particular is anything but successful. The start areas are gloomy, almost intimidating. Everything seems confusing. Then suddenly the moment comes when you as a player can see through the innovative deck construction mechanism - and playfully appreciate Lost in Random.
Lost in Random: Dark but charming fairy tale
Electronic Arts seems to want to consciously go experimental ways lately. Sometimes it pays off. Already It Takes Two was a refreshingly innovative and profound game - which should translate into a good rating in the test. Not without flaws, but at least so good that it shouldn't be missed - in retrospect, that is a possible short summary that one could have written about the forced two-player adventure. Even with Lost in Random, not everything is going smoothly, but ultimately enough to mark the adventure game as an insider tip.
Somewhere between Grimm's rather gloomy fairy tales and Tim Burton's confused ideas you have to locate the game of EA Originals and Zoink: Weird characters, a lot of darkness in the heart and on the screen and a good portion of chance are three of the ingredients that make up Lost in Random make a small hit - but one that you have to get involved with. Chance reigns, as the title of the game suggests, but a dictator has her fingers on the dice. Bad conditions for the realm of random, perfect for the gamer. He has to penetrate the gloom in the footsteps of the heroine Even. Support comes from “Dicey”, a living cube with arms and legs, with which Even can throw the most powerful weapon against chance: chance.
The story is the star, you often write that in tests, but here, too, it's true. Step by step you work your way through the atmospheric level areas, encountering figures that are even more weird than the Even-Dicey team. You can feel the charm and wit in many corners - even that succeeds quite accurately. A narrator sometimes breaks through the fourth wall - completely Deadpool-like - and first turns Lost in Random into the fairy tale it is. Time and again, the small fragments of stories of the most varied colors fascinate: sometimes a crazy mini fairy tale episode, sometimes a drug trip, then again a lot of melancholy, now and then horror - there is a lot thematically in Lost in Random. All of this carries the big story of friendship and injustice.
From a purely playful perspective, Lost in Random is a classic “adventure”, but with a twist: you fight by playing cards and rolling the dice. Fights are a dominant playful means and that is a good thing, because the strategic combat processes ensure fun, because the tactical component is clearly noticeable. Decisions have implications, the disputes can be decided in different ways.
Basically there are even two completely different ways of playing: You press opponents at close range or you attack them from a distance. And the cards offer further starting points for adapting the playing style to personal preferences. The typical standard food from adventure games is known, however: difficult and slow or nimble and light? Tough attacks or a clever approach? Direct attack or supporting gadgets? You always have to choose. The selection of cards is large enough to discover and combine variance again and again. Many card skills complement each other, which invites you to experiment. And because Lost in Random is permeated with random elements, you have to improvise regularly. Clever, Zoink - pretty clever.
You roam the six areas of Random linearly - here you stay true to the genre standard. And thus wastes potential. On the other hand, the developers have full control over the setting and story, and they use them. The environments differ significantly, offer new facets - but sometimes also uniformity. You discover your favorite corners again and again, the areas are so wonderfully crazy. It is set to music well and accompanied by a terrific musical accompaniment. The big variety is missing in the end - the darned B-note. With the sophistication of one Psychonauts 2 Lost in Random can't keep up.
A video game with such distinctive board game elements, which remains a video game and is not a board game adaptation, rarely or not at all. For this reason alone, Lost in Random should not be dismissed as a run-of-the-mill adventure, even if you come across a lot of familiar things apart from all the innovations. The mix of strategy, action and “randomness” is in any case a playful fireworks display that cannot fully ignite only because somehow the urge to explore cannot be addressed by the concept. You don't feel carried away by the sometimes lackluster passages. The excellent story writing makes up for it a lot. Such clever stories are little treasures in a gaming world that is otherwise dominated by mass instead of class. The dialogues with Dicey are rousing because you don't understand the dice buddy, but somehow you do.
Humor and emotions are inextricably linked with Lost in Random - the adventure video game works - just like It takes Two - on a different level, which is not only played on the gamepad and on the screen, but also in front of the screen.
Number of players: single player, multiplayer
Age: from 12 years
Long-term motivation: low
Sub-genre: Strategic Action-Adventure
Publisher: EA Originals
Official Website: Link
Year of publication: 2021
Platforms (Test system): PC, Playstation 4, Playstation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X| S, Nintendo Switch
Costs: from 29,99 euros
In the end, the good quality of Lost in Random is not really surprising, after all, Zoink and Electronic Arts cooperated on the platformer Fe a few years ago. The strategic video game with board game elements has now taken significantly newer, innovative paths. With success: Lost in Random is grand in parts, playfully exciting and full of wonderful story moments. The gameplay mix of action, tactics and chance works - this is paired on the presentation level with many visually impressive game passages. The fact that there are also repetitions and sometimes boring sections does not detract from the fun overall, but prevents Das Adventure in the coming-of-age fairytale style from jumping into the masterpiece category. Lost in Random has a lot of good moments in terms of level, but does not come close to the crazy-perfect quality of a Psychonaut 2.
Building a game around and with chance is in any case awesome, and so it remains an indie work a noteworthy title that one as an adventure lover should not miss. In any case, there are enough reasons to enter the realm of Random: Music, synchronization, game mechanisms, characters and story - all of this interlocks with almost eerie perfection. And for the approaching Halloween, Lost in Random with its dark and humorous story fits in anyway. The original concept behind the game sometimes obscures genre standards. You need just under twelve hours to enjoy the game to the fullest.
Perhaps the strongest element is the map construction system, which is no longer entirely new in form, but has been implemented excellently in the case of Lost in Random. Up to the end of the game you work on your deck and you are constantly challenged. The game never gets unfair, but one or the other point is quite tricky. There is a story mode where the focus is on the story. That's good and fun, but then you miss some of the appeal, because having to keep an eye on deck balancing is what drives you as a player.
Last updated on 4.10.2022/XNUMX/XNUMX / Affiliate Links / Images from the Amazon Product Advertising API. * = Affiliate links. Images from Amazon PA API