[SPOILERS] Mind Blown! Thinking of playing this game? Don't read!

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#51 Edited by Fimbulherjan (5 posts) -

The ending is not what was emotionally touching for me. The ending was simply closure. The weepy moment came at the middlepoint, when SP went up in flames and I heard her scream. And in my subconcious mind I kept it that way. Sure, the game later told me she was alive, but here is my take on the ending:

After SP is gone, you feel lonely and get depressed. You start imagining getting more letters from her. And in the end you subconciously decide to burn up your own house. Right before the flames take you, you have a "Dream sequence" or "Out of body experience" And when the game ends as you journey up up up in the sky in the weather balloon, thinking of how SP is alive and well on the beach, you are actually burning up up up in the house.

EDIT: If you find that unlikely, consider this: You are playing the entire game from a first person perspective up until the house burns up. And in the ending part you play from a 3rd person perspective.

#52 Edited by super2j (1696 posts) -

I am not sure exactly what the ending is saying. is it saying that this kid is in a comma and slowly dying? is it a commentary on how we spend our time on wasteful things, ignoring the important problems and people and not living our lives to the fullest? Why did everyone keep saying "you cant go back". Was that your family on the street corner?

@fimbulherjan: Ok, so you seem to be thinking along the same lines as me. The weather man was suspect to me. His comments were odd, he became supernatural. His presence suggests maybe the whole thing was imaginary.

#53 Posted by triple07 (1196 posts) -

Hmm interesting, I'm kinda surprised people like the ending to this game. Granted I didn't play the game I only looked up the ending on Youtube since the game looks boring as piss, but still the ending seemed like a kick in the balls to me. From what I've read and what I gathered from watching the ending it seems to be insulting casual phone games with its gameplay and its overarching message seems to be to get off your phones and experience the real world, if you take the fireplace to be a metaphor for modern cell phones as I did.

This all sounds well and good and is a fine message in my opinion except the developers made you play through the same kind of thing that they are saying to stop doing. Does this seem crazy to anyone else? The entire reason I didn't play the game was because I looked at gameplay and said "Wow, the game looks like one of those phone games I hate, I'm not buying that". Is that a worthwhile thing to do? Make a game that is intentionaly boring to play but has a good story and message based on the fact that your game is boring?

Maybe I'm just missing the point because I didn't play the game but again that seems to be kind of the point of the game. Its like here play a "waiting simulator", Ok now fuck those games!

#54 Posted by BisonHero (6532 posts) -

@triple07 said:

This all sounds well and good and is a fine message in my opinion except the developers made you play through the same kind of thing that they are saying to stop doing. Does this seem crazy to anyone else? The entire reason I didn't play the game was because I looked at gameplay and said "Wow, the game looks like one of those phone games I hate, I'm not buying that". Is that a worthwhile thing to do? Make a game that is intentionaly boring to play but has a good story and message based on the fact that your game is boring?

To make a satire, you generally have to demonstrate the thing you are satirizing, so that people draw the right comparisons about what exactly you are ridiculing. If the fireplace within the game were anything but a phone-game-with-a-bunch-of-wait-time, then you might instead think the whole game was telling people to stop playing video games in general, which is not the case. To the game's credit, you don't have to actually wait for hours and hours (or days) like a FarmVille or Pocket Planes or whatever, as the longest cooldown in the game is no longer than about 5 minutes, and that's only at the very end of the game.

The feeling of wasting 3 hours of your life and going "This is so boring, why am I doing this?" is the feeling that the game has to evoke to make its point at all. As far as I can tell, that feeling is what the developer would like us to recognize in most phone-game-with-a-bunch-of-wait-time as well.

#55 Posted by Abendlaender (2806 posts) -

I really enjoyed the game and I have to say: The soundtrack is just AMAZING.

#56 Edited by triple07 (1196 posts) -

@triple07 said:

This all sounds well and good and is a fine message in my opinion except the developers made you play through the same kind of thing that they are saying to stop doing. Does this seem crazy to anyone else? The entire reason I didn't play the game was because I looked at gameplay and said "Wow, the game looks like one of those phone games I hate, I'm not buying that". Is that a worthwhile thing to do? Make a game that is intentionaly boring to play but has a good story and message based on the fact that your game is boring?

To make a satire, you generally have to demonstrate the thing you are satirizing, so that people draw the right comparisons about what exactly you are ridiculing. If the fireplace within the game were anything but a phone-game-with-a-bunch-of-wait-time, then you might instead think the whole game was telling people to stop playing video games in general, which is not the case. To the game's credit, you don't have to actually wait for hours and hours (or days) like a FarmVille or Pocket Planes or whatever, as the longest cooldown in the game is no longer than about 5 minutes, and that's only at the very end of the game.

The feeling of wasting 3 hours of your life and going "This is so boring, why am I doing this?" is the feeling that the game has to evoke to make its point at all. As far as I can tell, that feeling is what the developer would like us to recognize in most phone-game-with-a-bunch-of-wait-time as well.

That's a good point and one I had not thought of. This makes me wonder about satire in interactive entertainment and how it could be done in the future.

#57 Edited by BisonHero (6532 posts) -

@triple07 said:

@bisonhero said:

@triple07 said:

This all sounds well and good and is a fine message in my opinion except the developers made you play through the same kind of thing that they are saying to stop doing. Does this seem crazy to anyone else? The entire reason I didn't play the game was because I looked at gameplay and said "Wow, the game looks like one of those phone games I hate, I'm not buying that". Is that a worthwhile thing to do? Make a game that is intentionaly boring to play but has a good story and message based on the fact that your game is boring?

To make a satire, you generally have to demonstrate the thing you are satirizing, so that people draw the right comparisons about what exactly you are ridiculing. If the fireplace within the game were anything but a phone-game-with-a-bunch-of-wait-time, then you might instead think the whole game was telling people to stop playing video games in general, which is not the case. To the game's credit, you don't have to actually wait for hours and hours (or days) like a FarmVille or Pocket Planes or whatever, as the longest cooldown in the game is no longer than about 5 minutes, and that's only at the very end of the game.

The feeling of wasting 3 hours of your life and going "This is so boring, why am I doing this?" is the feeling that the game has to evoke to make its point at all. As far as I can tell, that feeling is what the developer would like us to recognize in most phone-game-with-a-bunch-of-wait-time as well.

That's a good point and one I had not thought of. This makes me wonder about satire in interactive entertainment and how it could be done in the future.

It's a weird issue. It brings to mind this video from Zero Punctuation:

He thinks No More Heroes has flaws, but because the game is at least partly satirical of gamers and video game tropes, he's not sure if the flaws are intentional to make a point. But then he decides flaws are flaws, and you shouldn't give flaws a pass just because they're intentional.

I think that's a reasonable conclusion, so I agree that Little Inferno's gameplay is terrible, though to its credit, the fire simulation is pretty good given the team size and resources. Little Inferno actually won the Technical Excellence award at the 2013 Independent Games Festival. So the gameplay is bad, but the ending doesn't have the same impact if you didn't just waste several hours on that bad gameplay.

Steam says I played the game for exactly 4 hours, and I agree that it would really be pushing its luck if it were any longer than that. But it wouldn't get across its point if it only wasted like 30 minutes of your time or something brief like that. It's probably about as long as it needs to be.

And yeah, I fully agree, interactive satire is tricky business, especially if it's being sly about whether it is a satire or not. I'm looking at you, Metal Gear Solid 2, for maybe satirizing video game sequels by sort of running you through a similar series of events to the first game and then intentionally pointing it out at the end of the game.

#58 Posted by Hunter5024 (5686 posts) -

The story in this game ended up being a whole lot of fun, but the gameplay was disappointing compared to World of Goo.

#59 Edited by TheSouthernDandy (3872 posts) -

Due to the Humble Bundle I just got this and beat and wow. I'd heard there was something worth seeing in the end but I can't really believe this game had the emotional impact it did. Something about the music and the letters from your neighbour and thinking she died...I so wanted to find her at the beach in the end. What a great little game.

#60 Posted by subyman (624 posts) -

For those that didn't understand why it was getting colder look up volcanic/nuclear winter. You + the entire city burning stuff makes it colder. That in itself is a great moment when you realize it. What makes you comfortable and entertained makes the world around you more uncomfortable and harsher, thereby creating a deadly cycle.

Miss Nancy even hints at the global warmer debate when she asks the question about why it is getting colder and says something along the lines of "no one knows, we can't control the weather." Miss Nancy is a very wealthy lady that made her money harming the environment and then decided to simply leave Earth when the conditions became too unpleasant.

There are quite a few meanings buried throughout the game. Commercialism, mindless media, etc. For such a basic gameplay mechanic, they said a lot. I found it to be a surpassingly great game.

#61 Posted by BisonHero (6532 posts) -

@subyman: Care to weigh in on whether the game emotionally resonated with you? Because I still can't believe how many people were "deeply moved" by hearing the scream of Sugar Plumps and then finding out that she got away from it all (or something). She was such a caricature (like basically all characters in Little Inferno and World of Goo) that I really don't understand how people developed this attachment to her.

#62 Edited by subyman (624 posts) -

@bisonhero: I wouldn't say it emotionally resonated with me, but it was a thoughtful experience. I think the way they handled large issues with simple metaphor was very well done. I didn't get a strong attachment to Sugar Plumps. I thought the few things she said before the "death" part were interesting moments such as when she said something along the lines of "we all turn into tiny pieces and climb into the sky like everything we burn."

My favorite character was actually the Weather Man. I loved his sign off message. His simple reports gave a feeling of a connection to the outside world and a constant feeling of hope as he reported the various changes in weather, as if the cold conditions would eventually pass. When he started talking about seeing the sun above the smoke at the end, it made me want to fly above the clouds myself and see it, which is what the game ended on. A very liberating moment. Another touch hinting at us smothering ourselves from nature in our struggle for comfort/standard of living.

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