I actually agree with you on that, DaZucc. I think a barren, open area is more detrimental to good gameplay than a smaller, intricate area.
I think Hawke’s Bay has a lot of untapped potential, but I’d like it to be turned into something darker and moodier, with a creepy basement level added to the house, a far-reaching and crumbling underground tunnel network lit by swaying lanterns, and more wooden shacks containing Alma’s dark secrets out in the sand dunes. Something akin to Hitman meets the Resident Evil Remake in atmosphere.
Walking around a mostly featureless beach and watching people gossip and sunbathe doesn’t have the same appeal, unless it were a very posh beach party with a hell of a lot going on, canvass constructs in place of buildings, and continued access to the house.