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Fireside Review

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What a cool Puzzle game that feels a bit like a board game and reminds me of Viva Pinata. The main mechanic is trading but it feels a bit like a roguelite. I guess that completion takes around 20 hours, it has 2 missable achievements.


Approximate amount of time to 100%: My guess is around 20 hours or so, still working on getting there.
EDIT: I just learned from the developer that holding X/spacebar for 3 seconds skips the walking animation, this will speed up the game a lot more, so my guess of 20h might be overestimated.
Estimated achievement difficulty: 2/10
Minimum number of playthroughs needed: 1 if you use a savescum on the Hazel achievements
Is there a good guide available: Not yet, but you don’t really need a guide.
Multiplayer achievements: No
Missable achievements: Yes, 2 achievements have something to do with Hazel, if you choose one you will miss out on the other, but if you quit the game before it saves (it saves when you sleep) then you can replay that day and later on get to the other option for the second achievement.
Grinding Achievements: Not really, the amount of trades and cooking will probably be done before finishing all the achievements, and if not, they can be completed quite easily after that.
DLC-Only achievements: No
Speedrun achievements: No
Time-gated achievements: No
RNG-achievements: No
Does difficulty affect achievements: No difficulty option
Unobtainable/glitched achievements: No

Fireside is such a lovely game that feels a bit like a board game but also like a roguelite in which you upgrade stats to get better. Fireside reminds me a lot of No Time to Relax. That one also felt like a puzzle board game.

The main mechanic in Fireside is trading, you will trade items to get other items and make your way up to the items you want to upgrade items in your base camp, or to cook recipes. You only get an x amount of days to run around before you have to return to your camp, but the number of days can be increased with upgrades, as well as the amount of storage you have in your camp and in your pockets, a board on which you can see quests to get to certain people with the right items and a bunch of other stuff.

The most charming part of Fireside are the characters you meet on your way. There are a bunch of characters without a story but also a bunch with a story, who you will help along the way and meet again later. Such charming people and it felt like a puzzle in itself to then help them out and get the right item back to them, or check a location they told you to go.

Before starting with Fireside I wasn’t sure what I was getting into but it just looked cute and lovely. I was welcomed by such a well-made “puzzle/ choose your own adventure” kinda of game with as main mechanic trading. I can’t explain exactly how but it reminds me so much of the Viva Pinata games. Like tinkering with the environment, or in this game: the wares you have on you to get to a specific outcome. It is so addictive and you kinda have nothing to lose if you don’t succeed in an attempt to get what you want, there is always a next try.

I have not finished the game yet, and I expect to keep playing in the upcoming weeks, but I can see now that I did go for the wrong objectives at first. Trying to get to the next area as soon as possible looked like a good idea, but in hindsight, I can see that I should have focussed way more on cooking and mostly on the upgrades in your camp. I thought I would find more of the required items in the next area and maybe find them more easily over there to then upgrade my camp and some items you will find there but the trades get harder in the later areas and some items you might not even really find there. Gladly in every run you choose to which area you go so I’m not working my way on the upgrades through the earlier areas before going back to the final area.

For the achievements, most of them you get for trading and playing through the storyline. There is this story line with Hazel where you have a choice what to do with her axe. Those 2 achievements tied to that are missable because you have to make a choice. However, if you choose one option and close the game before it saves (which it does when you sleep) then you can replay that day and choose a different outcome. You’ll find Hazel in the second area (The forest).

There are also a bunch of achievements where you need to own a bunch of items together, for this you need to own them all at the same time, but some can be in your storage and others on you for it to unlock. I don’t think those are missable as most of the time when you have traded that item, you will encounter that same person and he still will have that item on him.

I’m looking forward to playing a lot more Fireside and finishing the game myself. I give Fireside 4 out of 5 stars.

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This review for Fireside was written on 6 June 2024, based on the current Steam version of the game which has 44 achievements at the time of writing this review. This information can be outdated, for example, when the developer adds or removes achievements or releases (new) DLC.

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