Oddball Game of the Month – November

Okay, okay…I know what you’re thinking – Dan, its December already.

Better late than never, right? I know you’ve all been on the edge of your seats waiting for this, so here goes:

November’s Oddball Game is INSIDE.

inside1

I’ll start out by saying that this game is definitely worthy of the title “oddball”. This comes as no surprise if you’ve played Playdead’s previous hit game LIMBO. You will travel through a weird, grey, and yet somehow stunningly beautiful world always on the edge of your seat as you avoid dangers.

inside3

When you boot up the game, there is no messing around…it just drops you straight in. You play as a young faceless boy who you’ll quickly learn is running from some pretty vicious adults and their murderous canine companions, as well as some more mystical threats.

The gameplay itself is a side-scrolling puzzle platformer…a genre of game that is all too common on Steam these days. However, while INSIDE doesn’t really offer anything new to the genre, it holds the distinction of actually being really good. A few things make it stand out from the crowd:

First, the aesthetic. This game manages to be equal parts intriguing and creepy. Faceless people, mystical creatures, and odd technology combine to create a world that you want to learn more about…and the visuals are the only clues you get.

Second, the soundtrack is extremely fitting. I hesitate to call it “music” as it’s really just ambient noise, but it fits the setting perfectly.

And third, the polish. The puzzles are well thought out – not too hard, not too easy, and fun to complete.

I also have a few very, very minor complaints with the game: The first is the one I mentioned on the podcast – the fact that my incompetence kept on meaning the death of a small boy (and they did not spare on the gore very much either). The other two are the length (~3 hours long) and the ending which, while certainly interesting, leaves you wanting more. The ending isn’t a major complaint at all as it leaves you with a sense of mystery, but I for one really wanted to learn more.

Overall, INSIDE is a short but very worthwhile adventure.

INSIDE is available on Steam for $22 Canadian

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