Don’t Sink is a 2D pirate-sim adventure in which you must captain a ship and crew while conquering islands and completing quests along the way. The game world consists of a handful of islands that are scarcely scattered with quest givers for you to talk to and help out. There isn’t much story to speak of, but some characters and NPCs have shreds of story tacked onto their quests.
Most of the gameplay comes in the form of ship battles. As you travel between islands, you’ll run into other ships that vary in strength and size. You’re given the option to fire cannonballs, board the enemy ship, repair your ship if you take damage, or flee. Cannonballs and ship supplies can be purchased at general stores found on most islands. You’ll also need to stock up on food, water, and alcohol, because your crew will get hungry and thirsty, or need a bit of motivation via a bottle of rum. As you complete quests and win ocean battles to earn gold, you’ll be able to upgrade to bigger ships and a bigger crew. This allows you to conquer islands with ease.
+ The pixelated presentation is nice. The colors used are very appealing and make the environments look different and stand out
+ The ship combat is easy, and fleeing works most of the time, meaning you are entirely able to play the game at your own pace.
+ The dialogue can be charming and funny at times, which brings life to the game.
– The game overall doesn’t have much content, and I was able to get the best ship and conquer all islands in roughly 3 hours.
– The soundtrack doesn’t match the visual presentation, which is a real shame.
– There isn’t much replay value, and in short time I found myself getting bored of the un-evolving gameplay.
Don’t Sink is fun to sit down and play for a bit, but after a couple of hours will quickly find itself uninstalled. It’s enjoyable at first, but will get old quickly.
*Switch Update – Most everything is the same, but the ability to play the game in handheld mode was a more enjoyable experience. It looks really nice on the Switch screen, and small sessions of play ended up being more enjoyable than playing it on console. I’d fully recommend buying the game on Switch if you’re having a hard time choosing.
Score – 5.5/10
Shawn’s Second Opinion
I was actually really into it for about an hour or two. Between the visual presentation and simple concept, I was drawn in up until I was simply grinding money to get the final ship. I’m not sure what else there is to do once you conquer places. Sure, you can build up the islands, but there really isn’t any reason to. Don’t Sink is thin on content, but at a cheaper price, it’s worth two or three hours of your time. It’s also a better experience when you realize it was essentially developed by one person.
*Reviewer bought the game from both the Xbox and Switch stores, played for 3-4 hours until completed, and unlocked all of the achievements.
Achievements/Trophies - There's 15 in total. It takes roughly 3 hours to conquer the islands and make your way through the list. Easy 1000GS.