Park Beyond

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Park Beyond – Hands-On Preview

‘Park Beyond’ is an up-and-coming promising theme park simulator and management game by Limbic Entertainment. Due for release 16th of June, 2023, MKAU got to have a hands-on preview of what’s to come and the future looks exciting.

You are but a lowly designer, doodling and inventing mechanical feats only you could dream of bringing to life. In frustration, you yeet your latest design out the window into the hands of the vibrant and enthusiastic Blaise, a rep for a company called Cloudstormer. This company is all about pushing boundaries in theme park technology, and it seems fate has delivered this paper plane design into the right hands.

The gameplay as you would assume with most park-building games has lots of different controls to get your head around. This is due to the fact you need to manage, move, rotate, and control a range of rides, buildings, and facilities. Given access to 3 campaign missions, Exploration Park and Sandbox mode means you can try each of these out to find where you will spend more of your time.

Each will throw you head first into the ins and outs of managing a park, people’s moods, cleanliness, and of course, the worst part the financial tolls of creating a great successful business. With many objectives to achieve along the way, you will need to find a balance between spending and maintaining to get those muchly-needed people through your gates.

The developers are aware that it is at times a little buggy, and I did experience a few during my time with Park Beyond. When too much was on screen it would get choppy frames and multiple crashes. Other than those few issues, the gameplay is generally fun with everything you’d expect from customising the style of paths to building and developing a theme around your ideal location.

The graphics had me a little conflicted. The bright and colourful atmosphere fits perfectly with the happy ambience a theme park always brings to the table. The individual items too, just as rides and food stands, all had unique and minute details that were gorgeous to take in and look at.

The character models of the human NPCs though in cutscenes were gaudy and creepy and nowhere near as polished as the in-game visuals. In the few moments I interacted with them I didn’t find anything particularly likeable about them.

One thing about the characters, though, is the fact they were impeccably voice-acted. The lines of dialogue from an actual narrative to what you were doing were a nice refreshing change, as most of these genres of games throw you in with little to no motivation to reach an end goal.

The maps are also sprinkled with low-key, ambient music, often relating to the type of map you are working on. Dusty cowboy twangs for desert maps and whimsical fantasy for some of the more wooded areas. The audio as a whole gives that carnival feel we all know and love from the more innocent and cherished times in our lives.

Overall, while Park Beyond is far from polished, performance-wise, the experience itself was that of pure fun and time-sucking gameplay. I spent hours perfecting my theme parks and obsessing over where all my profits were going. I can not wait for the full release and see what else this title has to offer. Disneyland status, here I come!

If you’d like to register for your chance to check out the game, the Closed Beta Test will be running from May 9th to 19th on PC. Head here to register: https://bnent.eu/BetaPB

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Written by: Stacey

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