We may earn a commission when you buy through links in our articles. Learn more.

Become a nature soothing spellcaster in beautiful new adventure game

Showcased at WASD Live, Island of Winds is a beautiful and haunting new adventure game about using magic to preserve the balance of nature.

Island of Winds - A woman wearing warm clothing raises a hand out in front of her as if testing the air, standing next to an old, withered tree.

When you think of videogame magic, you probably think of the more destructive tools first. Skyrim, Dragon Age, Baldur’s Gate 3 – blasting enemies with fireballs and lighting to solve your problems. But I’ve always had a penchant for the more nuanced spells, like The Witcher’s mind-swaying Axii sign and the DnD Command spell seen in BG3. So I’m very much intrigued by new indie adventure game Island of Winds, which is currently on show at WASD Live 2024 and is all about using your powers in service of a more peaceful life.

“In the world of Island of Winds, we are not killing animals, we are not in combat, we are not fighting,” Parity Games producer Anna Birna Turner explains of the new adventure game. Set on the titular island, you are Brynhildur, a balance keeper dealing with a sudden uprising of chaos. “So our focus here is not to cause hurt or harm but it is to restore the calmness and peace that existed before the events of the game.”

YouTube Thumbnail

The balance keepers are “a cross between a witch and a sorcerer that protects the balance of the natural world.” After Brynhildur’s ancestral home of Dreitill is devastated by a mysterious force and her friend Hrymja disappears, she is visited by the ghost of Margrét, the first of the balance keepers, who warns that the balance of nature is tilting out of control. “Chaos spills from open wounds and you must seek its source,” she remarks.

To help restore that balance, Brynhildur makes use of several magic spells, each of which has multiple uses. Viska helps you track the white raven that acts as your guide, but can also be used as a puzzle-solving aid or to discover hidden messages. Hugga is a healing spell that can dispel curses and clear charred abscesses on the land, but it will also calm enemies down to stop them from attacking you, clear minds, and diffuse tense situations.

As the story progresses, Brynhildur uncovers her third power – Stunga, a destructive force that was previously forbidden from use and sealed away. It can be used to stun creatures or break down obstacles in your path, but larger, more aggressive threats such as trolls are still best avoided altogether if possible. “It hasn’t been needed in a long time on the Island of Winds,” Turner remarks, “so the fact that Brynhildur is pulling it out is a signifier that something is really, really wrong.”

Island of Winds - A polar bear with crystal-like blue growths across its back and a twisted horn protruding from its forehead.

Island of Winds is set to arrive in 2025. If you’re as entranced by its haunting atmosphere and the beautiful, traditional Icelandic architecture of its setting as I am, you can wishlist it on Steam to stay up to date with development. We’ve also highlighted all the best games at WASD Live 2024 for your perusal.

Along with that, we’ve picked out plenty more of the best indie games on PC right now to keep you busy, or if you’re in the mood for a little mental gymnastics then take a look through the best puzzle games.

You can also follow us on Google News for daily PC games news, reviews, and guides, or grab our PCGN deals tracker to net yourself some bargains.