Sunday, September 14, 2014

Earthbound Review

Have you ever played a game that frustrated you to no end? A game where there are dozens of enemies but they’re mostly identical? A game where irritating status ailments are plentiful and what little enjoyment you get out of the combat is sucked dry by the persistent hassle? A game where you enjoy yourself more using a walkthrough because every single step is littered with obtuse bullshit triggers, so that you can only proceed when you think of things in the way the game designers did, as opposed to rationally in-universe? A game where, when you get down to it, everything is a broken mess that’s “old-school” in all the wrong ways? There’s a game like that...and it’s called Earthbound.

Have you ever played a game that defied your expectations? A game where, for better or worse, you can never really predict what’s going to happen next? A game where it’s in some strange middle-ground between absurdist parody and innocent, heartfelt story-telling? A game where there are strange but oddly compelling visuals and sounds, where you want to keep playing just to see where it’ll take you next? A game that can make you laugh, creep you out, and above all has an unusual earnestness to it that embodies the phrase ‘weird but wonderful’? There’s a game like that....and it’s called Earthbound.