Video games teach us to follow linear pathways to achieve a clear objective and reach a single, desirable end, a clear "game over" where we know we've succeeded or failed. Proteus could not deviate from that system farther. The first time I opened the game (which was just now), I found myself tearing up over... well, it's beauty, it's adventure, it's hard to describe. It's Proteus. (now admittedly I'm a huge wimp, but the experience was really emotionally moving, and not at all something I expected from a video game :P) It felt like five minutes of gametime; my Steam says I've logged five times that much. If any game is truly magical, it's Proteus.
Most games are easily beatable with a lot of grinding and the help of a google search, a wiki, or a friend, but the thing about Proteus is you don't "beat" it. You just play it. That's somewhat of a radical thing in video games, I think, and it makes playing Proteus a real stress-relieving experience. There's nothing to tell you what's going to happen, or even how you go about making it happen - that's what playing the game is for! You explore, you learn, you discover. It's a game that doesn't bend itself to the will of a dedicated, competitive player, it's a game that takes you along for an adventure. The music has the quality of pre-composed pieces but is formed naturally as you explore the environment, which changes with what seems to be a mind of its own. Swim to that island. Bump into that rock. Follow that blue hopping thing. Who knows where you'll end up? I don't. My mom don't. The wiki don't. At least I sure hope it don't... This game is whatever you want it to be, so I encourage any players not to start with asking what they can find or how to find it, but just to hop into the game and enter their own little dreamscape where anything and everything can happen. :3
On the practical side the game is very friendly with the options. You can play it fullscreen or in a window and you can adjust your field-of-view and mouse sensitivity very easily and even do it ingame if you please. The creators have pulled out all the stops to make sure this game is a convenient and comfortable experience as well as a beautiful one. I reckon I'd pay the full ten bucks for it, but if you can, get it on sale; whenever you can get your hands on it, Proteus will be waiting for you. :P
The game's not for everyone, but if you enjoy video games as an art form, if you're looking for a truly unique adventure that's both dynamic and peaceful at the same time, and heck, if you just flippin want to, give Proteus a try. This is a world I wouldn't mind going to when I die.