Wot I Think: 30 Flights Of Loving

By Alec Meer on August 22nd, 2012 at 3:30 pm.

Like its predecessor Gravity Bone, Blendo Games’ Thirty Flights of Loving is a short-form tale of cool criminals in a cuboid world, told from a first-person perspective with a hyper-compressed, non-linear narrative that focuses only on the drama and comedy, not the filler. Here’s what I made of it.

Thirty Flights of Loving is out now. It has a developer’s commentary too. It costs about four quid. Buy it.

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109 Comments »

  1. RobF says:

    My name is Rob and I agree with this graph. Buy it.

  2. Drayk says:

    I know I am cheap but… 5€ for 15 minutes of gameplay is a bit steep for me.

    • Alec Meer says:

      I spent £3.50 on a sandwich yesterday. I can’t even remember what was in it today. I’m pretty sure I’ll remember bits of 3FOL for years.

        • Eclipse says:

          wow that’s a lot of bullshit right there, thanks for the link. Or not?

          • Kaira- says:

            Bullshit? It makes more than valid points, IMO.

          • Shuck says:

            It’s completely missing the real issue, which is why do these games have to be sold for less than a dollar when traditionally equivalent games went for 40-60 dollars.

          • jorygriffis says:

            It also seems pretty irrelevant given that, for those who care, Blendo Games is totally a “trustable” experience, and as a sequel to the free Gravity Bone people paying the entree fee for TFOL should pretty well know what they’re in for.

          • njursten says:

            Shuck: Wait, what? Sure, they might’ve cost 5 bucks, or even 10, but don’t go comparing smart phone apps to full production value games.

        • FhnuZoag says:

          Why? Go read your link: those counter arguments don’t apply.

          This game isn’t a complete gamble because the developer made a previous game we liked, and various people are recommending this game.

          There is no free alternative to this game.

          Its craftsmanship is on display.

          So, why not use the analogy? It works pretty well?

          • oqmvxwtr says:

            This seems to fit well:
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uef17zOCDb8

            Hey Alec. i Signed up for the Kickstarter to get this but i never got the steam key. Anyone here know anything about this? Anyone signed up to get it early and got it already or didn’t get it?

          • tetracycloide says:

            No matter how many reviews there or even if you’ve played other games from the same dev buying a game site unseen is still a gamble. ‘Total’ gamble overstates it but it’s always always always a gamble.

            There aren’t any free games you could play instead? I think not.

            Analogizing a consumable to paying for access never works very well. It’s just a silly thing to do.

      • Drayk says:

        Ok, I’ll take your word that it’s THAT brilliant.
        I’ll pay Brendon’s sandwich tomorrow.

      • lordcooper says:

        That had better have been a bloody nice sarnie.

      • Sinnorfin says:

        I dont have a problem with the price of this game.. but Wow, coffee and sandwiches are overpriced there :D

      • Trinnet says:

        Per hour, this is an incredibly expensive game, it seems silly not to recognise that fact.

        Thirty Flights of Loving costs about £15 per hour. There’re almost no other games which come close to that.

        Listen, do you know anyone who bought the Razer Hydra? If you do, you probably thought they were a bit daft. But if someone bought a Hydra at the full price of £130, only played through the single player of Portal 2, and then binned it rather than reselling it, they’d still have paid less per hour than Thirty Flights costs.

        And maybe it’s worth it, maybe it’s that good, but don’t dismiss people pointing out that it’s pricey – it is.

        • Kadayi says:

          Guy makes a fair point tbh.

          • Ninja Dodo says:

            You can’t really measure enjoyment in hours. I enjoyed Portal a lot more than, say, Gothic 3 and played it for significantly fewer hours.

            As to above link: I tend to be skeptical of any text that prefaces each (subjective) point with “FACT”.

          • Kadayi says:

            That’s not much of a refutation tbh.

            The moon rotates around the earth FACT

            Is your skep-o-meter suddenly jumping around wildly?

        • Burc says:

          In what way is money/hour even relevant?

          Surely, the experience given should be weighted against the cost, not the cost per hour. Why even bring the length of the experience into it?

          Perhaps we differ in how we approach games, but surely same experience (for the same price) in a shorter time is a great thing? Unless games are just a timesink, in which case one should probably take a hard look at ones life. Or play other games.

          • tetracycloide says:

            In what way is it relevant? Most people get paid by the hour. More expensive leisure activities generally cost them harder work or longer hours of work. People like to avoid work. So when you see ‘is this game worth the money/hour’ what you need to translate that to in your head is ‘is this game worth the extra work I have to do in order to play it vs. playing some other game or engaging in some other activity.’ People generally have a fixed amount of free time they can spend on leisure and they generally have a fixed amount of money they can spend buying activities to fill that time with. Cost per unit time is a perfectly valid way to evaluate entertainment. Which isn’t to say that the intensity of the experience itself doesn’t matter. They both matter. Cost and time are still factors though, it would be silly to ignore them completely.

            Seriously, you’re going to argue directly that even thinking of entertainment in terms of cost per unit time is a warning sign that you need to reevaluate your life? You can take your bullshit self-righteousness and shove it right back where it came from. Wanting to fill your free time with activities that cost money isn’t evidence of some kind of neurosis or imbalance that needs to be examined. It’s evidence of a limited budget to fill your time with.

          • Burc says:

            Yikes, you don´t pull any punches do you? Sorry if I stepped on any toes.

            I have a really hard time formulating an answer though, because we seem to approach gaming (as well as leisure time in general) in vastly different ways.

            To me, there are so many ways to spend my time that I never lack for ways to entertain myself. Free entertainment is so readily available that it’s a problem to me in my everyday life. Also, just speaking generally, your utilitarian view of leisure time with x hours of playtime within y dollars is really foreign to me. I just want experiences that talk to me, and if I have free time left, fantastic. Ill do the dishes or browse the web or play crusader kings or whatever.

            I hope that clears my point out somewhat.

            tl;dr: I never thought about it that way, and I don´t really want to.

            PS: also, i didn´t mean to imply serious mental problems, just misplaced priorities. Sorry.

          • The Random One says:

            You don’t divide the cost of a movie ticket by its running time. Or the price of a book by its number of pages. Or the ticket to a rollercoaster by the lenght of its track. Why do you do it for games?

          • Kadayi says:

            Well generally most films have comparable running times, and most novels are of a certain weight (for want of a better word). You’d be hard pressed to convince people to pay full price for a cinema ticket on a film that’s 15 minutes long, just as much as you would a novel that comprised of a half dozen pages.

          • Ragnar says:

            Movies range from 60 to 200+ minutes. I have books ranging 150-650+ pages, with one short story that’s only 15 or so. Anime set run times range 125-650 minutes. Sure, games have more varriance in length, but they also have more variance in price from $0 to $120. But that’s beside the point.

            We don’t evaluate movies / shows based on their run time, nor books / comics / visual novels based on the number of pages they contain. We don’t evaluate food based on the time it takes us to consume it, nor music based on the length of the song / album / concert. So why, when evaluating games, are we so hung up on length?

            A game is too short when it feels unfinished, and too long when it feels repetitive and padded. Otherwise it’s the right length, and trying to conflate duration with value just leads to overwrought and overlong games needlessly padded out to try to hit a set play time.

        • The Random One says:

          “Per hour, this is an incredibly expensive game, it seems silly not to recognise that fact.”

          Per ounce, this is an incredibly expensive pizza!

          • Ragnar says:

            Per point, a football match is a very expensive sport to see live. American football provides a much better value.

    • hello_mr.Trout says:

      that 15 minutes is more thought provoking and emotional than a majority of big long extended generico releases tho – and comes with gravity bone, and dev commentary! and whilst it may not be like, a flawless experience, it’s still got oodles of creativity packed into it, and you will be thinking about it post playing it – seems like pretty good value.

    • BubuIIC says:

      If we are going to rate games like this, then The Binding of Isaac completely wins here for me. 5€ and 45 hours and counting.

      • Tacroy says:

        45 hours? Pfft, amature!

        Though my number is probably greatly inflated due to the fact that you can’t save, so the game gets left running all day if I was in the middle of a good run…

      • Shuck says:

        I believe I spent about a dollar during a Steam sale and (unexpectedly) ended up putting quite a few more hours than that into it. I really should mail the developer a wad of cash.

      • Jackablade says:

        Currently at 140 hours, still with a significant amount of content to unlock. That’s about 3 and a half cents per hour – pretty decent value methinks.

      • MrTambourineMan says:

        ^^This, I’ve spent a few € on it (with Wrath of the Lamb (must have!)) and played it somewhere in the neighbourhood of 70hrs, and I’m not done with it yet!

    • pelham.tovey says:

      Your mileage may vary. It’s certainly a noble endeavour in the field of narrative-through-environment but it’s not particularly accomplished. It crashes an AWFUL lot. If you can afford £3.50 for a curiosity then fill your boots.

    • thesundaybest says:

      If your assessment of a game’s value is the amount of time you can spend playing it, I’d suggest you’re on the wrong website. Do you judge all your entertainment this way? “Yeah, I liked Pulp Fiction but it was a bit short. That Battlefield Earth was way better.”

      If this bothers you, the fact that you pay the same amount to see every single movie, regardless of length or quality, must keep you up nights.

      • Drayk says:

        I think there is a difference between pointing out how pricey something is in regard of the quality and/or amount of content and calculating a price/length ratio. That’s exactly what’s in line with most DLC= Is it worth 5/10/20 bucks ? Does it add something to the experience.

        I don’t say I won’t pay for a game that’s 15 minutes long, but I say it rather be worth it.
        If it’s that short, it has to be a really worthwhile experience, don’t you think ?

        • thesundaybest says:

          Yes. Left that reply on the wrong comment. Was meant for Trinnet.

          • Trinnet says:

            It… it was?

            In my head at least, what my post said was that this is an expensive game for the amount of content you get, and that while it might be worth the price, it wasn’t really fair to jump on people for balking at the price.

          • thesundaybest says:

            I think this reply is going above your post, but, yes – if time equals value, than the 250 hours I spent in Borderlands makes it the most valuable game of all time for me. But it isn’t. That particular honour goes to either Okami or Psychonauts. I suppose it depends on what you mean by value, but I deny it can be measured with the simple equation Time/Money. And whenever this issue comes up, and it seems to come up all the time, it gets to the point where it devolves to simply Time = Value.

            And I think Alex Meer’s point, that a £4 anything can’t properly be considered expensive, holds, and not just in a oooh I’m from London way. But £4 for a story that makes your brain crackle is money well spent, and a more useful way to think of value in entertainment. “It was long enough for that money”, in my opinion, isn’t.

          • Trinnet says:

            Of course £4 can be expensive. You seem to be having trouble seeing it, so I’ll rephrase: Playing five hours of games like this would cost you £75. That’s not a cheap form of entertainment.

            And maybe it’s worth it. You seem super keen to reduce my argument to “The game which costs the least per hour is best”. But that’s not my argument, not at all – what I’m saying is: instead of pretending this game is cheap, let’s acknowledge that in terms of pennies for your minutes this is far and away the most expensive game on steam, and go from there.

      • tetracycloide says:

        Who pays the same amount to see a movie regardless of length or quality? It’s not common practice to say or think things like ‘well, I want to see it but I heard it wasn’t that great so I’ll wait to catch it on the dollar screens/DVD/Netflix/ect/ect/ect?’

        • The Random One says:

          Quality yes, but I’ve never heard anyone say “Oh I’ll wait until this movie is on Netflix, the ticket is too expensive for just 92 minutes of movie-watching.”

  3. seamoss says:

    Frankly, I never thought that Gravity Bone was all that interesting as a game.

    Cue endless discussion of games as art…

    • RobF says:

      But it’s brilliant as what it is

      So it doesn’t really matter, surely?

    • Grey Ganado says:

      It’s a story told almost exclusively through level design, it might not be a game in your eyes but there’s definately something to be learned.

    • Zombie Jesus says:

      What RobF and Gray Ganado said. 30FoL/Gravity Bone, Dear Esther and other “games” like them are not games per se so much as interactive stories (or linear stories with minor interactive elements) told using video-game-like level and environment design.

      • Burc says:

        Ah, come on fuck that. In what way are they not games?

        They are interactive experiences that provides play within a restricted space, totally a game.

        How many roads… an so on. It’s just new.

      • The Random One says:

        If a story told through level and environment design is not a game then a story told through words is not literature.

  4. rustybroomhandle says:

    I played it through twice in a row and want to play it twice more. That’s an hour’s enjoyment right there.

  5. jettpack says:

    yeah, i played it 3 times. then i played it with Developer Commentary. Also it comes with Gravity bone built in, which i know is free but hey, its already installed, might as well play it again.

  6. mzlapq says:

    So, 7/10?

  7. Schaulustiger says:

    I have to admit that I didn’t fully understand it.
    And with the developer’s commentary on, the game always crashes a few rooms in.

    • Zeewolf says:

      Heh, reminds me of Air Forte from the same dev. Went through the game fine, but the final boss? Not only did the game crash, every time I tried, but it gave me a blue screen(!!) and rebooted my computer.

      Bought this, so I hope it doesn’t do the same thing.

  8. Squirrelfanatic says:

    I bought it yesterday, played through it once… and must say that although I totally feel that this is a nice little game I fear that I might have missed something (and I don’t mean that little plaque at the end, I saw that).

    Maybe I need to play through it again tonight.

    • The Random One says:

      This is a criticism I can agree with. On Gravity Bone there were gaps in the storyline, but the game made it very obvious that they were by design and you were supposed to reach your own conclusions. That didn’t feel so clear to me in Thirty Flights and even now I have the impression there’s something I didn’t “get”.

  9. The_Great_Skratsby says:

    I couldn’t agree more, though the image used really little bit well, spoilery in a sense of the impact of that bit. Juuuust saying.

  10. nasKo says:

    Pricetag isn’t attractive enough, considering it’s not even an hour of fun.
    Sorry, but that’s not acceptable. Even for an indie game.

    • mbr says:

      “…considering it’s not even an hour of fun.”

      You’d never appreciate this anyway.

      • Ultra-Humanite says:

        [I will learn to not be a horrible person or I will go away.]

    • Hematite says:

      For 15 enjoyable, memorable minutes of story I’m happy to pay that. There are specific XKCD comics which are worth at least as much to me.

      It’s not a value proposition that fits well into the traditional notion of computer games though, and I certainly appreciate that brief but intense entertainment has a different value to different people.

      • Burc says:

        Exactly! I just don´t understand this obsession with length. Surely, what we want is experiences, so if a game can give you that in a more condensed way, isn´t that better? Like, way better?

  11. RagingLion says:

    It really is completely excellent. It’s amazing how much atmosphere is achieved with so little.

    And Mr (Radiator) Yang has been saying some rather superlative things about it too: “Basically, Thirty Flights of Loving is one of the most important video games made in the last 500 years, and if you do not play it then you are a fool.” Possibly just over the top but I’m not quite sure. Currently planning a write-up of it myself.

    Edit: I think the thing I keep coming back to is how masterfully it paces the experience. It has the fast-moving quick cut sections where you just go where it tells you really and then those where you can actually take your time a bit more so you don’t feel that it’s purely about pressing forwards constantly – it is that in many places but manages to make it work when it is.

  12. CaLe says:

    It felt like every other FPS I’ve ever played. Except I didn’t shoot anyone, and I learned something.

    Oh it also crashed my PC in the worst possible way. Annoying looping sound and then complete lock up.

  13. brau says:

    Hey Alec. i Signed up for the Kickstarter to get this but i never got the steam key. Anyone here know anything about this? Anyone signed up to get it early and got it already or didn’t get it?

  14. Justin Keverne says:

    I was left cold by it the first few times I played, and it was only noticing something at the start of the third attempt that it even began to make sense.

    • RagingLion says:

      ******AMBIGUOUS SPOILERS*******
      Related to limbs? That one? I didn’t catch that one but fortunately someone else watching did. I’m still uncertain of exactly what and why and in perhaps what order things went down in that room from the header image to this RPS post.

      • Justin Keverne says:

        Yeah that. I’m still not sure what happened in the room but I can at least now work what happened leading up to it.

      • Alec Meer says:

        Yes, I noticed that too. Maybe a result of the motorbike bit?

        • Justin Keverne says:

          That’s my take, noticing that made everything slot into a sequence which made it easier to parse. I’m still not sure if I actually like it though.

          • VelvetFistIronGlove says:

            I can put together the sequence of events, but I can’t make any sense of them. The jump-cuts between confusing scenes left me mostly puzzled, and rather unable to get into the game. Where Gravity Bone’s simplicity and directness (in terms of what you had to do, and what resulted) led to immediate engagement, here I only feel distant and baffled.

          • Grape says:

            VelvetFistIronGlove, I couldn’t agree more. My thoughts exactly.

        • Andy`` says:

          *** More SPOILEROOS, obviously ***

          I hadn’t noticed the aforementioned thing at the start before, went back in the game to have a peek and noticed the wreck of a motorcycle in the cave, down by the water. It’s a green bike, and looks like the one you ride in the accident

          • Theory says:

            Hmm, I prefer my interpretation: there was no bike crash, and the car only intrudes into that scene because you’re drifting back to the present moment.

  15. Berzee says:

    edit: ditto

  16. Ross Angus says:

    Well, I bought it and feel slightly cheated. I had 15 minutes to kill before work today, and I did not manage to finish it in that time. Warning: this game might take you more than fifteen minutes to finish. There.

    Aside from the lengthy running time, it was utterly charming. It encapsulates characters with three words. It also made me laugh several times.

  17. Andy`` says:

    You can pick up an orange.

    And then carry it through the rest of the game.

    GOTY 2012.

  18. FhnuZoag says:

    So, er, SPOILER SPACE
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    Hmm, okay, let’s see if I can untangle the sequence of events here.

    The first part, chronologically, is you, Anita and Borges in that crappy apartment. Is Anita your wife? Since Borges is the Best Man? You go up to the party. You get drunk with Anita at the party, and make love. And then to finish off that evening-morning, you ride motorbikes along the wrong side of the highway, and crash.

    Anita loses an arm and a leg in this accident, and results with mechanical replacements. I believe the life-of-crime starts, or at least resumes here. You are reasonably successful, and so end up with the hideout at the bar, a sizeable step up from grotty-apartment. You plan a raid on the Curata airport.

    Things go wrong. Now, I’m not sure how. For whatever reason, you elect to take Borges with you to make your escape. (Does Anita force you at gunpoint?) You two eventually make it to outside, where somehow you evade capture by the police and steal a police car.

    Then you crash. And die?

    So, open questions to my mind:
    1. What’s caused the falling out between you and Anita? Why do you rescue Borges and not Anita?
    2. What’s the significance of the Bernoulli segment in the museum?
    3. What is the relation to Gravity Bone? I notice the femme fatale character from Gravity Bone at times, but is that just a coincidence?

    • Bhazor says:

      I think you end up going to bed with the femme fatale at the party because theres a flash back at the end with her in Anita’s bed. Also during the Sharp Shooter cutaway you can see her hanging just next to her.

    • Pattom says:

      SPOILERS, OBV

      1) The feeling I got was that Anita fell in love with the player character, but the player led her on while seeing other women. One of those women was likely Gravity Bone’s femme fatale, who seduced you so she could sell you out to the police. By the time the job has gone south, Anita has figured out that you’ve both betrayed her trust and effectively gotten her and Borges killed. You have to save Borges because, if you listen closely, you can hear clicking beneath the title music. Anita’s guns are empty but she’s still trying to kill you.

      2) No idea what the significance of the Bernoulli exhibit is supposed to be. I keep replaying it just to parse that bit, but no luck so far. I suspect that already being familiar with the equations is keeping me from seeing the intended metaphor.

      3) Honestly, I noticed just as many callbacks to Atom Zombie Smasher as to Gravity Bone. The newspaper headlines and Cervidian passports jump out to me first, as AZS has some rich flavor text if you go through the in-game manual. Brendon Chung has said they’re all part of the same setting (probably Flotilla, as well, since Gravity Bone and AZS have a few references to starships), but I don’t think those allusions are more than a wink to any players who can recognize them.

      • Theory says:

        .
        .
        .
        .

        Anita and Borgues have already shot each other by the time you enter the room (via the ceiling vent). She’s the betrayer. The snippet of story in manual.htm reinforces this.

        The player character is so shocked and upset that he spends the rest of the game losing concentration and running back through the memories of his relationship with Anita, leading to a fatal car crash.

        • Pattom says:

          There’s a manual? I need to check the files for that. Also, good catch on the ceiling vent, as I somehow forgot that bit. Guess I’ll have to replay it. :D

          EDIT:

          SPOILERS:

          WOW.

          Found the manual. I think it’s ambiguous about who the traitor is (she seems to be addressing the player character, rather than Borges), but it does change the context of the wedding scene just enough to make me doubt my old theory. Also, that first paragraph is one of the most tragic things I’ve ever read.

          • Hulk Handsome says:

            Also note that when you first smash cut to the title, blood splatters. It’s not clear whether you shot Anita or Anita shot you, though.

          • Grape says:

            Hulk Handsome, Anita didn’t shoot you, and you didn’t shoot her. Chronologically, that scene happens right after you fall down the shaft. At this point, Anita and Borges have already been shot.

          • Hulk Handsome says:

            But then how do you explain the blood splattering everywhere when it cuts to the titles? I figure they already had a fight (Anita and the big B), you drop in through the vent, slowly crawl around the corner, and that’s when the confrontation between the player and Anita happens. Chronologically, the titles would hit right after that. I guess the game skips what happens in the few moments between the two scenes.

          • HothMonster says:

            5 days late but…her gun is already clicking empty when you drop down the vent.

    • RagingLion says:

      SPOILERS

      Man, I didn’t even realise that later cut to the woman on the bed wasn’t Anita – I guess that’s what you get with cube-headed women and fast cuts – I’d already replayed it like 6 times and hadn’t noticed then either.

      Also, did you notice the ‘Forget the past’ for the corridor after the load when pushing Borges – I only did on my 3rd go, but that seems to be an indicator of where the story is pointing.

    • JoeX111 says:

      I don’t think Anita is the woman in the Best Man flashback for a couple reasons. If you look at it in Commentary Mode, you can see that the woman in the red dress is not her. Similar hairstyles, but Anita’s hair color is lighter, plus her eyes and lips are drawn very differently. Also, when you go up to the rooftop party, the woman in the red dress is there with the same groom. So I doubt you’re him.

      Strangely, if you knock on the door almost directly across from the apartment, when Anita and Borges leave with the cake, the groom from the Best Man flashback opens the door.

      Also, interestingly, the femme fatale girl is in Anita’s Sharpshooter flashback. Look in the background. She’s behind the words, also holding a rifle.

      I guess my interpretation of events is that you and Borges and Anita all worked and lived together, once upon a time, mixing criminality with every day living. At the wedding, you and Anita get drunk and later sleep together. Then, later, you get involved in a motorcycle accident where Anita loses her leg and arm. Somewhere between there and the airport heist, the player sleeps with the femme fatale chick, who is probably in some way involved in their criminal enterprises. She betrays them all and tells Anita the truth about your affair, thus leading her to try shooting you when you drop down from the air vent.

      A bit of a stretch, but it makes the most sense to me.

  19. Bhazor says:

    The game is too short.

    Not just as in “it’s over too soon” but as in “too short to do what it tries”. Compared to Gravity Bone theres no tension, no challange and no actual game. Gravity Bone had simple puzzles, exploration and a great chase sequence. In terms of presentation it’s a long way behind Gravity Bone with mostly forgettable music and an incredibly bland airport sequence.

    30 Flights has walking in a line and pressing the one thing that you can interact with.

    The key question with experimental short form games is “What would I miss if this was a short film”?
    With Gravity Bone? Plenty.
    With this? Honestly, nothing.

    • Theory says:

      I think you miss the single most important thing: jump cuts working in a game, to my knowledge for the first time ever.

      It’s not something that the gaming public might be so excited by but I thought it was great.

    • musurca. says:

      I have to agree with Bhazor. It feels like 30 Flights of Loving is actively trying to prevent me from engaging with the story. For example, as soon as I walked into the terminal carrying Borges, I got excited about playing escape-and-evade with the police drones — and then the “jump cuts” whisked me away safely into another scene. I felt tremendously disappointed, as if the game had broken a promise to me. The rest of the game seemed like a series of broken promises.

      There were some lovely elements — the quick-cut backstory for Borges and Anita, eating an orange by peeling away the skin piece by piece — but it never added up to anything substantial.

      I haven’t listened to the developer commentary yet, but it felt like this was an attempt to make something that does for games what a Wong Kar-wai movie does for cinema — elliptical, tongue-in-cheek, telling an intimate story using the semantics of a genre piece (the heist). But it’s very difficult to make that work without distancing the audience from the story — which is what happened with 30 Flights of Loving.

      I say this as someone who *loved* Gravity Bone (not to mention Flotilla by the same developer).

      • Lambchops says:

        I think I’m in agreement. I thought Gravity Bone was excellent but this didn’t quite work for me.

  20. StranaMente says:

    I played the game, read the commentary, read your posts and all I can say is that I don’t like the game even a little bit. And even if I spent so little I feel I wasted my money.
    And 15 minutes to complete? Even taking my time to look at everything, it took slightly more then 5 minutes to complete it.
    Not worth it.
    And yes it keep crashing every few minutes too, an amazing feat to achieve given its lenght.

  21. thestage says:

    thanks for this highly informative post, Mr. Meer.

  22. blind_boy_grunt says:

    i love the world blendo create with the citizen abel games. Full of intrigue, spies, thieves, bizarre machinery, and bigger things going on just a stone throw away from the story you are currently in. Also it has a mechanized president. And that is why i think i like gravity’s bone more. It had more worldbuilding. I didn’t even like “30 flights” that much at first. But having played it some more i picked up on details and it started to feel like a complete story. The story arch may be shot to hell but the story is there, all i have to do is fill the gaps.

  23. bill says:

    It’s a nice game, but it’s too long. Why do I have to play it for 15 minutes to get the full story when they could totally have told it in 10 minutes?

  24. pinje says:

    Maybe I missed the point of this game slightly, before I played it, I was really looking forward to playing it and just when things seemed to be getting going and interesting it all came to a rather abrupt end.

    I totally agree with the whole “hyper-compressed, non-linear narrative that focuses only on the drama and comedy, not the filler” but the story can jump around rather quickly which can be a little confusing.

    Saying that, I will probably play through it again. After all, doesn’t take long.

  25. cytokindness says:

    Well that was really disappointing. The jump cuts yanked me out of the story (I thought the game was broken in the airport transport section at first!). There’s no real meat to the story – it’s fine to have unresolved questions, but remove too much and you’re left with something like Braid or Lost in which you simply suspect that the creator had no idea about the story either.

    A poorly told story with good music that makes me wish I hadn’t spent the five dollars.

    (actually wait I just figured out how to get the music out of the archives. it may be worth the money now)

  26. cytokindness says:

    Oh and it looks like the game can/should be distributed free – legally!

    It seems that KMQuake2 is a GPL engine, meaning the whole of 30FOL should be under GPL…