Stranded Sails – Explorers of the Cursed Islands is out today on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC, and Nintendo Switch. If you’re looking for a seafaring/survival/farming cocktail then this may be the autumn indie game for you. If you want our verdict, make sure sure you read TSA’s Stranded Sails review.
For those about to embark on their island adventures, we’ve put together a handy guide to get you through those first story missions – there’s also a list of 10 useful tips for starting out.
Stranded Sails doesn’t start you off on a desert island. Instead, the game leads you through a brief introduction as you potter around a small port town before boarding your father’s ship to go exploring. There are a couple of mini tasks to perform here such as fetching a box from the nearby dock and climbing the rigging to unfurl the sails.
Your voyage is cut short thanks to a devastating storm that wipes out your entire crew. Don’t worry, they’re not dead but when you awake on a debris-covered beach, you realise that your shipmates are now scattered. There are more pressing matters to attend to first, however.
This first section won’t give you any trouble. All you need to do is find Sven before jumping on a raft and arriving at the main island. Here you’ll need to walk eastward along the northern shoreline to find the ship’s cabin where you father Charles is resting after being injured in the storm.
A small path to the left of the cabin will take you to your base camp. Here you’ll also find Fiola who oversees the farm – she’ll run you through a basic tutorial before you’re tasked with finding another survivor: Logan.
He can be found on the eastern shore of this first large area. Make sure that you don’t run out of stamina and try searching for crates along the way – these will include new seeds that can be planted back at the farm as well as resources and other key items.
Expanding Your Camp
Once you’ve found Logan, he’ll ask you to recover his lost tools which can be found in the area surrounding the camp. There’s another task you too: handing you an axe, he’ll send you to find a new camp. This area is just a tad south of where you are now and is obscured by a thorn bush which can be chopped away. Once cleared, explore this new patch of land and cut down a handful of trees in order to collect logs.
Take these back to Logan and you’ll now have the resources to start building cabins for your survivors. Logan’s cabin only requires wooden planks which can be crafted from logs. You’ll then need to build a cabin for Fiola, chopping down more trees and gathering scraps which can be found by Logan’s cabin. Sven wants in on the action too. His cabin needs to be built just west of the camp, on the beach. You’ll receive metal scraps that can be used with other materials to complete construction.
Once you’ve talked with the survivors again, you’ll unlock access to Sven’s rowing boat and a cooking pot. This pot is used for “Stew for the Crew”, allowing you to combine the crops you’ve been farming and other food items into a tasty broth that can be consumed to refill stamina and gain a temporary energy boost.
Make sure you top up the stew as often as you can. This will increase your bond with the other survivors, unlocking a number of upgrades that are a huge help later on in the game.
Fritz is the next missing crew member on your list. A parrot (the same one you spot right before the storm hit) delivers a letter informing you of his location.
You’ll need to hop aboard the rowing boat and head north. Fritz can be found on one of the northmost sandbanks to the left (use your newly-acquired telescope to spot him). Before speaking with him, search the nearby area for resources as well as his fishing rod. If you immediately go back to base with Fritz, you’ll need to row back to this tiny island to retrieve the rod.
Fritz needs a cabin too so make sure you have 2 wooden planks and a rugged rope ready. He’ll then sending you on a fishing trip to catch a clam, mackerel, and bluefish. The fishing mini game in Stranded Sails is fairly easy to master – press the action button in time with the ripples to reel in your catch. The better your timing, the closer you’ll reel the fish in. Keep in mind that some rarer fish will put a fight. It’s best to leave this for now until you upgrade your rod.
We’ve made a great start but there are still three more members of your crew lost at sea! Check part two of our walkthrough for where to find Teresa, Brenda, and Cecille, as finish setting up camp and begin delving into the islands’ mysteries…