“It is said by the Eldar that in water there lives yet the echo of the Music of the Ainur more than in any substance that is in this Earth; and many of the Children of Ilúvatar hearken still unsated to the voices of the Sea, and yet know not for what they listen.” J.R.R. Tolkien
Resonance of the Ocean is a short and relaxing puzzle game in which players must make musical instruments from washed-up flotsam and jetsam in order to respond to mysterious sounds from across the waves.
Developer: Image Labo
Released: 9th July 2022
Price: Free/Name your own price
Every day a new sound or set of sounds echoes from across the ocean. The player must explore the island and find and combine items to create musical instruments that will mimic the mysterious noises as a way of responding. For example, combining a bottle and twig to make a bell. These sound and inventory-based puzzles are a lot of fun and manage to be quite satisfying without being too difficult.
The controls are perhaps a little unconventional in that the game plays a lot like a point and click, except there are no mouse controls available. Instead, the player can use keyboard only and utilise WASD, Z, X, C, Shift and Space to navigate the island and interact with different items.
Narrative and Styling
Resonance of the Ocean tells an unusual and emotive tale. It features some intriguing narrative elements such as strange symbols on stones and hints of someone who previously inhabited the island. Nothing is expanded upon in detail or explained fully allowing for some interpretation on the player’s part which works well with the style and length of the game.
The game has a charming, hand-drawn art style with a simple cartoon aesthetic and a soft, muted colour palette that really suits the relaxing nature of the game. The sound design is fantastic with an emotive and beautifully melodic title track featuring gentle piano and immersive ambient sound effects, not to mention the different puzzle-related sounds that play on repeat each day.
Resonance of the Ocean will take 15-30 minutes to play and is a lovely example of a casual game that can be enjoyed as a quick break. The artwork is delightful and the emotive music helps engage the player with the intriguing narrative. Overall, the game makes great use of its short playtime and is a lovely, relaxing experience that can be enjoyed for free. I definitely recommend this game to those who like short, chilled-out experiences and fans of point-and-click style games.
A full playthrough of Resonance of the Ocean is available on the Indie HIve YouTube channel:
For more music-themed puzzle games, take a look at the following:
Sonority – A Brand New Musical Puzzle Game! – One Hand Clapping: Sing Your Way Through this Brand New Adventure!