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Laysara: Summit Kingdom Preview: Yaking It Up!

No need to be afraid of heights in Laysara: Summit Kingdom, the friendly yaks will help you yak-cept them! This enchanting game takes a whole new meaning to city builders. I think the most unique thing about the game is the fact that not only is there limited space, but it also has me building vertically up different types of mountains. This also makes the game somewhat challenging for someone like me who is still fairly new to city builder games.

It starts out with a story as to why this village is trying to move up into the mountains in the first place: A mysterious fog has enveloped the land. I am tasked with helping them rebuild their lives within the mountains so that they can survive. I appreciate how in depth the tutorial is on basic concepts by taking me through three different elevations of the mountain. The lowlanders are definitely the easiest to work with and didn’t require any high needs to upgrade their homes. This is where the cute little yaks are introduced since they are vital to transport and farming. It became tricky when I went vertically to the side of the mountain and started working with the artisans who required higher quality buildings and food in order to upgrade their homes. The monks are the last group, and if it wasn’t obvious, I needed a lot more to make them happy. The tutorial took me about 30-45 minutes and walked me through how buildings worked and connected and gave me goals to complete prior to finishing the tutorial. It gave me a good understanding of the premise of the game. Coming out of the tutorial, I understood how to navigate and chain buildings properly. I hopped into my 1st mountain and chose novice mode, hoping that it would be easy on me as a new city builder. I did okay with the base level of the mountain and decided to go up. I went vertical and my money dropped fast and before I knew it, it was game over. I tried again, this time being more strategic with placement and how many buildings I was placing.Once again, I lost all my money and my game ended. 

I noticed two things that were part of the reason I was struggling. First, there is no way to rotate buildings (yet). Some of the buildings need to be close to each other in order to connect their processes. Since I couldn’t rotate and I had minimal space on each elevation it made it hard to fit new buildings in without spending a large amount of my money. Thankfully, there is no penalty to deconstructing buildings, but without the rotation it’s still a puzzle to try to make it all fit correctly. Second, I chose novice mode, which in fairness should be the easiest mode out of the four options. The new mountain maps required me to know about different items in order to upgrade any of the buildings. I wish the novice mode provided some more guidance than it did. 

There is also a creative mode which I decided to try out to see if I could learn a bit more before heading back into the normal levels again. Creative mode did not offer any type of additional learning. I didn’t even have to chain the production buildings. I hope that in the future they offer a creative version where it’s money free, but allows you to still follow the rules of the game. 

Last but not least, I absolutely love the art style of this game. The visuals have so many little details that allowed me to be immersed in the gameplay. I liked being able to see the yaks transporting goods or a lowlander sweeping their front porch. Not only that, the different mountain maps had different skylines including an aurora one which is my favorite. The music also allowed me to happily escape in the gameplay and it fit the mountain vibes perfectly. 

Final Grade: B

Laysara is still in early access so I hope that some of the features I mentioned above are eventually added to the game. The variety of production chains and resident building requests makes the game both intriguing and challenging. What really sets this game apart from other city builders is the uniqueness of the vertical building in a small space. I am looking forward to continuing to try to refine my village and watching for any future updates!

Review code provided by Future Friends Games



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