Graveyard Keeper is basically a really messed up Harvest Moon. It presents a slow story that follows one man sent back in time to deal with an old school graveyard. Things go horribly wrong in the present time and it's just about someone trying to find their way home. That aside, you jump right into the schedule of dealing with bodies and increasing your presence within the local town. I make the comparison to the classic farming title as you also perform activities like you would in that game. You can tend to crops, build equipment to refine wood or metal and then complete mini quests.
There's a deep skill tree involved and there's quite an impressive amount of depth present for the RPG elements. That being said, it's quite a drag to get going and it can feel tedious attempting to collect the necessary items to complete tasks. I definitely loved it once I got into the flow of things, but those first few hours or so can be a real turn off. Not to mention I also had it glitch on the console so that no new bodies would come and I had to restart, really killed it for me.
I loved the visuals of Graveyard Keeper as it's incredibly detailed. Every little part of the world looked realistic, yet retained a classic aesthetic which looked great. It also handled well being simple to understand and the use of time for certain moments to happen was well integrated.
This might be overwhelming for some, but you'll get a handle on it after the extended start segment. There's something charming to dealing with the bodies and then presenting a tidy grave setup. You're able to mine, chop down trees and craft a ton of things. The environment is dynamic with changing weather patterns which were spooky and it feels like a somewhat lively world.
Graveyard Keeper has a high quality to it with a ton to do, the starting segment is however quite boring to work through. I also had a major problem with bodies stopping so it's unclear if other bugs are present as that was game breaking for me. I liked the general narrative as it was clear and then open. They could have provided better tools for what your goals were, but the open ended style worked well for making me have to explore and learn.
There's a lot of depth for the RPG elements and many activities to take part in. The balance of stamina could have been kinder, it can be slow to get things done yet it also provides a need of being smart about what you do in a day. There's a lot of character to this world and it's truly one weirdly enjoyable Harvest Moon-like experience, assuming you can get past the dragging portions of gameplay.
Read our Castaway Paradise Review
View our TinyBuild Hub
Graveyard Keeper Review on Xbox One X
Review Code Provided by TinyBuild