Foreward: To those who are reading this and are upset about my choice of title, a bit of context: This post was made when 30 Flights of Loving was first announced, back when discussion about videogames was dominated entirely by Mass Effect 3 and its endings. End of foreward.
Look, I get that, like, Mass Effect is important to you. You had some sort of emotional attachment to a space man who screwed blue ladies and dgaf.
I did too, I get that. It's okay, but you can keep that to yourself. Because something way more important is happening right now. More important than screwing blue ladies. No really.
You can stop peeing yourselves. If you can, that is. Because I've been peeing myself every time I see that trailer.
Oh you're not peeing yourself? What the fuck is wrong with you? Am I going to have to explain this to you?
Gravity Bone is a freeware game that you can play for free. And you really should, you really, really should. You owe it to yourself as a person who likes videogames and entertainment to play Gravity Bone. You owe it to yourself to play Gravity Bone and just appreciate, in the short 20 minutes it takes to play the game, how magical it is when videogames successfully tell a narrative.
Yeah, that's right, you heard me. A Narrative. In a Video Game. Unintrusive, enticing, funny and fucking smart. Gravity Bone knows how to tell a story, short as it may be, better than pretty much any videogame you've played in recent memory. Maybe Portal did it better. MAYBE.
Short of it is, Gravity Bone oozes style. It fucking nails what it goes for and doesn't overstay its welcome. It's like a delicious and sweet espresso shot that you play and think HOLY SHIT. HOLY SHIT. I AM PLAYING A VIDEOGAME RIGHT NOW AND NONE OF IT IS A HEADACHE. I am experiencing story and gameplay AT THE SAME TIME right now and it doesn't involve jumping up and down out of boredom as a stupid npcman talks to me about shit IDGAF ABOUT. I'm not getting drowned in setup, I'm not getting speeches about what the fuck I need to be doing, I'm figuring this shit out naturally, quickly, and am entertained THROUGHOUT. And while I'm having fun playing I'm also getting all these little bits and pieces of story that are unintrusive and fun! The style of the game CARRIES this whole thing. I said it in the first sentence of this paragraph and I'm not lying, even the fucking .htm manual that comes with the download has it!
But maybe you are reading this post on a calculator and can't play games, or maybe you can't download things because you are Canadian. I will tell you the first chapter of the game. Maybe that will convince you.
The game starts with a stylish punch to the face as trumpets fire off in a jazzy rhythm as you descend the elevator, arriving at a very ritzy masked soiree. In your hand is a simple card. Your contractor, Teletran Seven, has you out doing "wetwork" at the Saturday Club. Your primary objective: get to the furnace room and receive further instructions.
You wade your way through the crowd of rich socialites as the security eyes you suspiciously. But it's cool, you're Citizen Abel. You are able to get this shit done. You make your way to the furnace room, cleverly manipulating your way past the waiters, and a short hip and skop later you locate your mission objectives.
They suspect something, no doubt, but your mission is successful. The drink has been successfully delivered. You make a hasty but calm exit. Act natural, don't arouse suspicion.
You are rewarded for your successful espionage with payment... and a hilarious powerpoint of what exactly it is you just did (it is something you should see for yourself)
And that was the "setup".
Wait what? setup? But where was the lady who comes up to you and talks to you while you slowly walk down a corridor and explains to you what a videogame is? Where was the part where the game halts all progress and exploration and locks you in a room until you press ctrl and then eventually press spacebar?
More importantly, why do I have such a great feel for my character and those around me? Why do I feel a sense of wonder and excitement at this new exciting world of cartoonish espionage?
It was because the game just let me play it. It just let me play it. It gave me a business card with an objective and told me to get there. Then it just let me find where to go on my own terms and discover the game for my own. And that curiosity and achievement from discovery made every interaction more exciting and enjoyable. I didn't pound every key imaginable as a cutscene was playing, I didn't try and move furniture around as npcs told me about garbage. Gravity Bone's terseness and restraint makes the content intensely enjoyable. And it helps that the humor is really well done too.
So you are a bad person if you don't play Gravity Bone
Look there's an entire chapter of this game I haven't even told you about. It involves winning an olympic medal, dodging oncoming trains and photographing weaponised birds. WEAPONISED BIRDS.
Download and play the game and tell me you didn't smile. Tell me you didn't grin as you played it (except for maybe the part where you jump on flagpoles but that part's still pretty badass) Tell me you didn't finish the game and think to yourself MAN, I WANT MORE OF THAT.
Because guess what, if you did say that, you're in luck cuz YOU'RE GETTING IT
Now you understand! NOW YOU UNDERSTAND. THERE IS GOING TO BE A SEQUEL TO GRAVITY BONE.
You probably spend lots of your time arguing about game stories and how the story can't interfere with the gameplay. You probably like to espouse lots of philosophical bullshit about games and about how they are art and about how games can tell stories in a way that nothing else can.
WELL HERE IS FREE AMMUNITION. This is like a TACTICAL NUKE justifying your opinion. Because it's true, I agree with you. I'VE SEEN IT. IT'S HERE.
IT'S IN GRAVITY BONE.
And soon, soon lightning will strike TWICE. And you will PEE YOURSELF like I am peeing myself.