Date: March 24, 2023
The hot air balloon ship of Passing By might make you think of Merchant of the Skies, but it’s really much more like a Spiritfarer and games of its kind that take you on a casual exploration journey, coupled with a wholesome story and some puzzles.
Passing By: Tailwind Journey just got announced at PAX East 2023, with a demo that allowed us to hop onto our ship, release the anchor, start up the burner, unfurl the sails, and float away along the islands strewn across the calm blue sky.
At any point you can anchor on any of the islands and discover their residents, stuck on their little worlds alike the planet dwellers of The Little Prince, with stories to share, comments on your choice of a lifestyle, and occasionally some requests — should you be willing to help.
Lonely benches overlooking the never-ending skies, self-sustaining oases, hilly islands overtaken by jungle growth are among many of the features you will encounter in these isolated mini destinations. There you will also be able to gather some resources and supplies for your ship; but also stumble upon puzzles within caves and abandoned buildings, which will help you uncover more about this world’s story.
Passing By also comes with a survival aspect that encourages you to gather water and food, and watch out for the ambient temperature (an important consideration when flying high in the never-ending skies), which ends up being a little more involved than what you would see in Spiritfarer, but not to the point where it turns Passing By into a survival game. At its core it is still a casual exploration adventure, encouraging you to explore more of its peculiar islands.
Just don’t forget to snack on an apple every now and then… at some point even a stranded skeleton pirate won’t be able to help but note that adventuring to the point where you forget to take care of yourself is not the best idea…
If gently floating among the islands sound like your kind of a relaxing game, Passing By: Tailwind Journey is available to wishlist on Steam!