The Trail is an interesting game with an interesting concept. At the very start of the game, you board a boat and set sail to what is called The New World. Once you get off the boat, you find out that you are supposed to try and reach a town called Eden Falls and try to make a living there. But there is a catch. In order to get there, you need to travel on a really long trail, giving this game it’s name. Not only are the activities that you do along the way fun and entertaining, but the scenery is breathtaking.
In a brief tutorial provided by a guide, you learn how to forage, craft, and do some basic mini-games. Those mini-games come in the form of chopping small trees and hunting bunnies and other animals. The tutorial also teaches you that there are little pit-stops called campsites where you rest and trade. Often times you have a bird with you that is holding an envelope that has an item on it – when you obtain one of those items it goes in the envelope. When the envelope is full of a certain type of item, the bird flies away and you get a new crafting recipe. You receive the recipe at the next campsite. Although this sounds easy and fun, it can be extremely annoying: when the item happens to be in a crafting recipe for something you need, it gets sucked into the envelope, you can’t get the item back, and, as a result, you can’t craft the item.
Trading, crafting, foraging and playing mini-games aren’t the only thing that makes this game worth it. The animation of The Trail – beautiful mountains, peaceful valleys, and awesome forests – is simply the best, and makes the game even more enjoyable.
The Trail gets a little confusing when you actually get to your “destination.” The town you get to is not called Eden Falls, so you’re not sure if you are finished. I have now learned that the towns you go to are created by other players, but it still leaves the question of where Eden Falls actually is. Aside from that, the mechanics in the towns are really good. You buy some land, and build a small house, which can be upgraded. Your house also has a type. Each type of house has a different machine in back. Put a certain amount of a certain material in that machine and it makes an item that can be used to upgrade your house.
But a town wouldn’t be a town without a community. Eventually you need to get other materials from other houses in order to upgrade your house, so you have to interact with the other citizens of your town in order to get different materials. But that’s not all. As a town you share gold. You can use gold to build certain buildings that do certain things in your town. I don’t mean building houses, I mean building places where you can chat, shop, and donate, etc. In order to earn gold, you need to donate items to The Warehouse, and the more boxes you fill with items the more gold you get. The community features are amazing in The Trail, and are still improving in creative ways.
The Trail is fun. But there are some inconveniences other than the bird with the envelope. First the energy bar always seems to run out in an instant. There are items to increase energy, but your energy still decreases super fast. You can use food items to make sure your energy doesn’t run out, but I often found myself filling my entire inventory with food just to get from one campsite to the next. In The Trail there are also a series of rivers. In order to cross these rivers, you have to pay a boatman an insane amount of coins, and you often have to teleport to previous campsites repeatedly in order to save up enough to cross the river. This gets even more annoying when you build a house because you have to choose between buying useful items for your house or saving up to cross a river.
All in all, The Trail is a good game, but with some big inconveniences.