Pop some "Missionoyl" and get comfortable, cause Jazzpunk is ready to mess with your brain.
It’s not so often that I find a game where I can’t really properly come up with the words to explain why it’s so appealing. Instead I end up saying nebulous phrases like, “trust me, you have to play it.” Such is the case with Jazzpunk, a bizarre game that breaks classification and provides a wonderfully unique and completely insane experience.
Jazzpunk follows a similar trend in structure to games like Gone Home or The Stanley Parable in that it’s all about giving you an environment, and letting you the player poke and prod at it. That environment is an alternate 1950s, filled with spies, robots, and Hunter S. Thompson like vacationers to name a few. The world Jazzpunk presents is spewing with lighthearted cheekiness and wit, the kind of place you want to spend your time in. Its presentation helps sell its world as well. At first glance you’d think Jazzpunk is completely unrealistic with everyone looking like the people you see on signs for bathrooms and bright colors filling the screen. At you’d be right in your assumption. Jazzpunk makes zero attempts to be realistic, but instead fills its absurd reality with so much detail that it does feel real, in its own nutty way.
Comedy is a hard thing to write about as it’s one of the most subjective mediums out there. So let’s find something to compare Jazzpunk to. Do you like Airplane? Because Jazzpunk was clearly inspired by Airplane. The game takes the simple premise of being a spy, and doing spy like objectives such as stealing tapes, and fills the world around it with insanity. Not random insanity mind you, although it may seem that way at first glance. Everything in Jazzpunk feels like it belongs in its crazy world. There’s a consistency to its madness, making throwing spiders in chef’s face feel right at home with Kabuki girls that turn into mutant flies.
Jazzpunk is also best served as a video game. The actual objectives in Jazzpunk are quick and simple, and you’d be missing out if you didn’t take the time to explore. Your ability to interact and participate in its jokes and gags is half the fun, and things would certainly feel less fun otherwise. Realizing my goal is to annoy people in a movie theater and then doing it myself is what makes it so funny, and it would lose something if I was just watching it happen or even if it told me what to do. Jazzpunk relies on you the player participating in its madness so it’s best to just sit back and revel in it.
Jazzpunk is an experience where the less I say the better. Everything is worth seeing first hand. The game will only last you 2 or so hours, but it hardly feels lacking. Comedy can easily get stale when it hangs around too long, so it’s to Jazzpunk’s benefit that it gets in and out quickly, keeping everything fast moving and fresh. In short, go play Jazzpunk.