Thinking of buying? Read this first and then decide.
I'm going to catch some flak for this, I know it, but I feel like this needs to be said for the people who may be thinking about purchasing this. Just so we're clear, this is coming from the viewpoint of someone who studied visual art. I was a sculptor and studied 2D and 3D design. Also dabbled in some video game design and 3D modeling. Anyway, here we go.
What you see in the videos on the Steam store page is *precisely* what you get. Cool visuals and cool scenery, but that's it. It's quite beautiful. This is really cool for the first 5-10 minutes, as there is a strong sense of awe and wonder at all of the strangeness of the world you're dumped in...but after that you're probably going to get bored. It doesn't last.
You can't interact with the world in any way. The most you can do is approach objects and creatures and have them either a) make noise, b) run away from you and make noise or c) chase you and make noise (flies, for example, will do this).
There are some cool little things here and there, but this is not what I would consider a "game". There's no objective except to get to "the end". To play through this is going to take you all of 30 - 45 minutes. This *is* what I would consider "art". It provokes immersion, exploration, it engages. Those are all things that art and games have in common. But it doesn't have the qualities that a game has. There's no clear objectives. There are no mechanics. The bit of structure and flow that exists is very loose and it is difficult for most players to perceive it is even there at all. You have to be very observant to realize what's going on. Like a lot of art, there are very few people that are going to be able to enjoy this with repeated viewings/plays. Not many people end up loving a painting so much that they have to own it, they want in their home, want to see it every day, etc. The same is true for this title. Not many people are going to play this again after the first run. I'd reckon many won't even make it through the first run. There are games that are both "games" and "art". Bastion comes to mind, as does Braid. You can play, mess with game mechanics, experiment, discover new things, have an impact on your environment, and at the same time be moved and influenced by the story, the art, the music and the entire experience. This is not one of those titles, sadly.
To me, this title is a good example of something I wish I would have thought of when I was in art school. A different way to use computers and games to engage an audience and share an experience. However, it's *not* a game. I feel like this has to be stressed. I don't feel like this is worth the $8.99/$9.99 they're asking for. There's not a lot of replay value unless you're among that small subset of people that just really get off on this art/music style and want to veg out. May be awesome if you're a stoner, too, I'm not sure. In my opinion, not for the average gamer, though...a lot of people on Steam are going to feel ripped at this price point. I'd feel better about it if it were in the $2.99 - $4.99 price range.
Just my 5 cents. I'm not here to have an argument, so please don't try to start one. I hope this was helpful to anyone who's on the fence about this.
Last edited by Rodalli
Jan 30, 2013 @ 10:10pm