Richard Hofmeier’s Cart Life has become something of a critical darling, receiving quite a lot of positive press since its release in March of this year. Billed as a “retail simulation for Windows,” the game explores the use of video game mechanics and conventions in order to simulate a rather bleak world of desperation and drudgery.
When I say that I was expecting to enjoy this game, I want to be clear: I know that it is not intended to be “fun” in any traditional sense of the word as it applies to video games. I know the mechanics are supposed to be repetitive and generally unpleasant, and that it is specifically designed to evoke the sensation of futility and desperation that accompanies long days of hard work for not enough pay.
But the game’s premise and wonderful pixel-art aesthetic really hooked me, and I was very much expecting to have at the very least some kind of engaging or intellectually satisfying experience.
But that didn’t happen.
I’ve been in possession of the anime adaptation of The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya for approximately five billion years, and it’s finally time that I actually watch the damn thing. I’ve had a lot of false starts with this show, but I’ve come to realise that this problem stems almost entirely from trying to start it from Episode 0, the in-universe fan movie. With no context to give it any meaning, it’s just so boring I’ve never been able to finish the episode, let alone move on.
So here’s to starting with the “second” episode and getting some actual story! Thoughts to come once I’m done with it.
I’ve been on a bit of a Visual Novel kick recently, inspired by a post on Queereka about Christine Love‘s new sequel to Analogue: A Hate Story, Hate Plus. I’m actually planning on discussing both those games here when I get the chance to write about them more thoroughly, but for those interested in her work generally, I wrote a review of don’t take it personally babe, it just ain’t your story for School of Doubt just a couple of weeks ago.
Today I’m going to be focusing on a different game, though, that quickly made it into my to-play queue once I started looking for more examples of the genre from indie developers. The premise of Chris Cornell‘s Save the Date is, well, that you are going out on a date with a nice girl named Felicia and you need to save her from a number of improbably dangerous scenarios.
SPOILERS UNDER THE CUT: I would advise playing the game a bit before proceeding, as my commentary will thoroughly ruin most of the game. It takes about an hour or so, all told, though each individual playthrough is quite short.
Hello and welcome! I’m Dan, and I watch and read and play a lot of things. Like, a lot of things. But the benefit of watching and reading and playing so many things on various electronic media (aside, of course, from the glorious entertainment) is that I often find myself with things to say about them. Sometimes even marginally interesting things.