Thursday, June 18, 2020

REVIEW: Islands: Non-Places (game)

I picked up Islands: Non-Places as part of a bundle. It's basically a series of mildly interactive places. You're taken to various locations - an escalator, a fountain, a parking lot, a lounge, etc. - that gradually change as you interact with them in very specific and linear ways.

This isn't a walking simulator. Although you can rotate the locations, you can't freely explore them. All you do is look for blinking lights (or anything else that seems to be inviting you to click it), click them, and then watch the scene unfold in beautiful and surprising ways. My favorites were probably the parking lot and the flooding lounge, but the escalator was amusing too.

Although Islands: Non-Places was very nicely done and made for an intriguing forty minutes or so, I'm not sure I'd recommend it to most folks, and I'd have been very annoyed if I'd paid full price for it ($4.99). I like casual, low-adrenaline games as well as stuff that some folks would argue aren't games at all, like visual novels (both the ones with choices and kinetic visuals novels where you just sit back and read). This could have fallen into the second category, except there wasn't a story to it. This could have fallen into the first category, except that its interactive aspects were extremely limited and linear, and there wasn't anything that counted as puzzles once you figured out that you had to rotate the scenes and click stuff. In the end it was experience. A very short one.

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