Yonder is a beautiful game, and my only real qualm with it is that it isn’t longer. I was gearing up for this to be a 20-30 hour adventure, but then I completed the story in about six hours and maxed out what I wanted to do in eight. Yonder does set you up with the tools to play indefinitely, but I found its crafting and farming elements to be lackluster gimmicks compared to the exploration and questing aspects. Yonder seriously feels like a compressed version of Breath of the Wild, stripping out the combat entirely so you can focus on getting to know the world, the animals, and people. Combat was my least favorite part of BotW, anyway, so Yonder was perfect for me.
Well, I’ll admit that this game has its flaws, too. For instance, your character does this weird thing where he/she will jump backwards if you’re too close to a wall, which can make trying to scale mountains super aggravating. And while I appreciated how big and real the world felt, running back and forth across its biomes gets a little tedious after a while. Sure, there are teleporters you can open up to mitigate that, but even then, they’re not always in the most convenient locations. These are ultimately small complaints, though. Yonder was an engrossing experience, the kind of game where I continually got distracted by other side quests when trying to finish another. Alas, these side quests will fly by faster than you’d think.