You know sometimes when you see a game and your brain just goes “…what?” Well that is what On the Level Game Sudios’ title, Curse of the Nordic Cove,is. This game is in a category all its own; that category being “First Person Golf Simulation/ Survival Horror game.” Yeah, you can go “awuhh” now.
So here is what happened in this “Nordic Cove.” An archeologist named Dr. Howard Bre has unearthed an ancient burial site of an evil viking named Helfdane the Terrible. Doing so has caused an evil curse to take over the excavation site, which just happens to be on a golf course. Now Helfdane’s army of supernatural baddies roam the grounds preying on unsuspecting caddies.
In steps the main character, Paulie Chops. Just a normal guy who was one his way to see his girlfriend, Kayte Sparo, who also happens to be Dr. Bre’s assistant. Along the way he is attacked by a phantom and crashes his motorcycle. As you vision clears yellow arrows point to a beer, some golf clubs, and what appears to be a cannon. Yeah, things are about to get weird.
During my time with the game I only played a couple levels but as I understand it every level varies tremendously from the last, but they all revolve around the golf course. In the first level I played, my main goal was to golf. While golfing though, I was under constant attack by phantoms trying to steal my soul. I could defend myself using my clubs as weapons but eventually they would break, and without my clubs I had nothing to hit the ball with. So this led to me searching all over the grounds for dead bodies to loot in hopes that somebody had a driver. It took a little getting used to but the scavenge, putt, and defend mechanics really did hit that survival horror vibe.
The second level I played was a little more action focused. The groundskeeper had modified a lawnmower into an anti-phantom tank, complete with golf ball cannon and face made out of sharp metal. The literal goal of this level was lost to me, as I stumbled into a forbidden area. The seams of the game started to show at this point as well as the one thing this game needs more than anything else, polish.
The ideas behind this game are out there, way out there. Because of that originality it is easy to pass over some of the glitches and bugs present. However even if it is an indie game it still needs to run properly. In my short time with Curse of the Nordic Cove I ran into several glitches and bugs, like the aforementioned forbidden area. I was going along what seemed to be the path and just kinda wound up there. Another thing that bugged me was the inability to look straight down at the ground. I am not certain if that is a design choice or a kink but either way it is frustrating.
In speaking with the team creating the game, they were super receptive to criticism and never tried to make an excuse as to why something “couldn’t be done.” They know there are bugs and they seem to be doing what they can to eliminate them before release. With such an off the wall game and a small excited team it is hard not to get just a little anxious to see how this game turns out. With some focus on eliminating the bugs and glitches this game could easily be a -wait for it- hole in one.
But seriously, this game was way cool, even with the bugs and if you want to help them get this game on Steam, upvote here.