Game: Down in Bermuda
Genre: Adventure, Puzzle, Arcade, Role-Playing
System: Nintendo Switch (also on Steam, Epic, Xbox One & iOS)
Developers | Publishers: YAK | Yak & Co
Age Rating: UK 3+ | US E
Price: UK £19.99 | US $19.99
Release Date: January 14th, 2021
Review code used, with many thanks to Yak & Co
Down in Bermuda is Yak & Co’s second puzzle adventure. Their first game was Agent A: A Puzzle in Disguise which I reviewed in 2019. Down in Bermuda was initially released as part of the Apple Arcade worldwide launch. Then, the game had three islands but since the game has been expanded and the Switch release is the full game with six islands. Let’s have a look at it!
Meet Milton the Aviator
An unnatural storm leaves an adventurous aviator stranded decades ago on the infamous Bermuda Triangle. Years later, you the player turns up to help Milton get home. You do this by exploring the environments on each of the six unique islands. The story is told through wordless cutscenes and additional photos that you find on the island in the style of flashbacks.
Collect the Orbs
Down in Bermuda is a puzzle game at its heart, mixed with exploration aspects. Your goal in the game is to progress through the island by collecting orbs. To progress you must collect every orb and that can be a little difficult at times, but it never felt frustrating to me. The game is played from a top-down view and is fully in 3D. You are encouraged to explore each island from all angles.
ach island scene has light orbs scattered throughout. Finding orbs involves interacting with the environment in different ways. From opening clamshells to flipping over rocks to blowing holes in shipwrecks with a cannon. Hunting down the orbs is surprisingly fun experience.
Find other Treasures
It’s not just orbs you can find on the islands, each island has its own map to find. Along with a photo which is a memory of our brave aviator life. There are also keys to find which will open a secret door the same colour as the key to find more treasure behind.
The islands are single detailed dioramas, all are ripe for exploration. Most of the puzzles are the cause-and-effect kind, more so than logic style puzzles. So you’ll be flicking switches for temples to rise out of the grass somewhere. Or you might open an underwater dome and a sea monster will appear.
Find the Map
Every island contains roughly 20 small orbs that must all be collected to receive a bigger orb. The small star orbs start out plentiful at first and easy to spot from the start of the level. However, once you have found the more obvious orbs the others are harder to find and these are more challenging. Once you have found the map on each island you can use it to spot the less obvious orbs to find them. You need to collect four of the larger orbs to be able to proceed to the next islands.
Your intrepid aviator Milton will meet all kinds of creatures, a sea creature with an old ship tangled in its seaweed. And a skeleton pirate who challenges you to find his treasure is just a few of them.
Visuals and Controls
Since every level is vibrant and packed with tiny details you’ll need to keep zooming in to inspect everything. The camera controls work well, by pressing the shoulder button you can zoom in and out.
To scroll around the map you use the D-pad direction buttons and that took a little getting used to. Alternatively, you can use the touchscreen, pan with one finger, rotate the camera with two fingers. Once I got used to the controls it is easy to manage the camera and such.
Visually I like the look of the game with its cartoonish style graphics. All the island are colourful and bright, with different environments on each island to explore. From shipwreck island which has lots of shipwrecks to explore for orbs. To Lava island which as the name suggests has pools of hot lava dotted around it.
The music and sound effects are great, some islands focus more on the sound effects than the music. It’s a good variety for the ears to listen to while playing the game.
The only complaint I have about Down in Bermuda is you can’t see all of the island when you zoom out. But that’s down to the size of the screen on the Switch in handheld mode and not necessarily the games fault.
I’ve throughly enjoyed the puzzles in Down in Bermuda, there are just the right kind of difficulty. Enough of a challenge to give you a feeling of satisfaction once you have completed them. Hunting down the orbs is entertaining as you search everywhere for all of them. And for that, I give it our highest praise!
Final Verdict: Two Thumbs Up