Arcade and adventure gaming don’t always gel well together, but Daniel Mullins’ meta game Pony Island might just break all those genre rules.
I’ve always liked games which subtly changed well-worn gameplay formulas and even went so far as to make the player realize it’s all a game, something the Metal Gear Solid series as well as Simon the Sorcerer 3D did, the one asking the player to switch controllers, the other requiring the physical CD/DVD drive to open. However, nothing seems quite like Pony Island, as it literally puts you into an arcade machine, together with other lost gamer souls.
What this means is that lots of corrupt data and code can be seen, breaking graphics as well as gameplay apart. Being marketed as a suspense puzzle game in disguise, this weirdness doesn’t stop with the graphical presentation, but continues with the dialogue between player and machine, as the devil is really inside the machine, opening up new levels of puzzles and what programming is about, mostly the poorly done side.
Games have become very self-referential lately with more experimental gameplay. But in case of this title that takes a humorous approach, it might just work if one knows these types of games and is aware of intricate gaming mechanics. It’s certainly a game that stands out from the crowd of indies often trying to achieve too much with their writing, or at least it appears to be, just as the trailer plays with one’s expectations. If these are met, one can make up one’s own mind about with a 10% launch discount that lasts until February 18, 1:59 PM GMT.
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