Light theme

Rusty Lake: Roots review
Exceptional
by Chase Ingebritson

Rusty Lake: Roots is a simple, yet engaging point and click puzzle game focused on the Vanderboom family and their lives on the shore of Rusty Lake.

Controls

As a point and click adventure, the controls are fairly simple: you point and you click. Other than that, actions feel responsive and interactions with the world don't generally feel like they last too long or move too quickly.

Gameplay

Rusty Lake: Roots focuses on maintaining a simple core mechanic of combining one or two items together to create something new, then using that item in a series of complex puzzles. Due to the vast amount of puzzles available and the relatively short length of the game, the gameplay never really feels like it gets stale at any points.

Sound

Overall, the music wasn't bad, but also wasn't anything amazing. It always fit the tone of the game appropriately and never felt too out of place. There were also a few moments where the music played very nicely into the gameplay and led to quite memorable moments, even if the music itself wasn't very memorable on its own. The voice acting was OK at best, often failing to match the dramatic tone of the game.

Art

The art of the Rusty Lake series continues to astound me from game to game and nothing about that changes in Rusty Lake: Roots. The only part that annoys me personally was the film grain-esque filter applied over all the gameplay. It aims to help to match the overall tone of the game, but ends up feeling like more of a distraction than an actual improvement.

Story

I've always been a fan of providing a story piecemeal to a player rather than in one long series and this game plays very nicely into that strategy. The overall story is relatively short, making it easy to keep straight when the pieces start being revealed. The actual story itself isn't terrible throughout, with an ending that feels fair, albeit a bit lackluster.
«Can’t stop playing»
«Time-tested»

Other reviews10

Translated by
Microsoft from French
I have appropriated this game through the humble Jumbo bundle 11. In two and a half weeks, I was able to finish the game. Rusty Lake: roots is like a novel because the characters are very well developed to the healthy of the "family". They are described through macabre events, in every scene, without losing truthfulness in their pains. These characters are presented in a tree (pseudo-genealogical) that show each scene (33 in total) of the Vanderboom family. The whole begins with a legacy that James Vanderboom receives by the death of his uncle, William Vanderboom. He will give his house where several generations of Vanderboom are put into the world. The whole is set up in the late 19th and early 20th century. The puzzles are easy. A "Walkthrough" has provided us if you have any resolution problems. I had to use it 4-5 times to unlock myself but it is far from a crutch to the development of the game. The scenes are strictly closed to itself that even if you have the Enigma of the end (for example), you will have no idea, or indeed no trouble to cross the table present. There is very little reading to do. It's much more pictographic as an adventure. And, like a tree with several branches, the tables are made of an order more or less decided in advance. You will have the choice of the table you wish to make, but this, within the usual chronologism of a "family". To conclude, I loved this family. The macabre is glitting. Rusty Lake is a 12-game franchise (as of now), and I believe that someday I will be willing to invest in such a game again.
Read more...
Translated by
Microsoft from Dutch
A macabre but beautiful story. You follow the life of the family and descendants of Vanderboom, in 33 closely intertwined puzzles. They are not too difficult, but it is also about the story. Brilliant if you like black humor.
Translated by
Microsoft from Deutsch
The morbid theme of this game may not meet everyone's taste, but the quality and variety of the riddles are just amazing. I love the Rusty Lake series and can not wait for the next part!
Translated by
Microsoft from French
He is a head chef. An atmosphere and a plot worthy of a novel. Stubborn but not too difficult nigmes. I liked Rusty Lake Hotel a lot but it's still a step up with a part the same obsessive images.
Translated by
Microsoft from Italian
I can't finish it because in the enigma 28 (the one of the pigeons) for some strange bug I can't move them and they are the wrong color. For safety I checked the walkthrough and saw that there is this problem ... Too bad because I was having a great time.
Translated by
Microsoft from Italian
I started with Season and I never stopped. All beautiful, but this is certainly the most beautiful. The captivating graphics and the atmosphere of noir, surreal and brilliant madness. Those of Rustylake are the only games I download, the others don't even look at them!
Translated by
Microsoft from Norsk
This game is by far the most intriguing one I've come across to date. It's extremely well thought out and although it's slow and relaxing, you still get moments of suspense. It starts off innocent but it soon turns into a dark, twisted family saga with secrets. Highly...I repeat, highly recommend.
Translated by
Microsoft from Dutch
Rusty Lake fan since the Cube Escapes. Paid apps Rusty Lake Hotel and Paradox 2 were also good. This was disappointing: too easy puzzles, I missed the creativity of time travel and the black humor. The last part was back at the old level. A nice game, but not like the previous one. Or have we been spoiled?
Translated by
Microsoft from Deutsch
The graphics are very simple, surprisingly effective. Here someone was really very creative! I did not think that the game could be such a spell! The riddles are easy to solve intuitively, but are very imaginative and therefore not boring. One remains always curious. The story is sometimes portrayed quite macabre, it succeeds the developers seemingly effortless atmosphere to create and so many things really gets under your skin. Overall, very entertaining and equally relaxing as captivating. I'm totally excited and I'll even get "hotel"