By Nathan Grayson on July 2nd, 2014 at 6:00 pm.
I grew up in Texas. For reference, that means I didn’t actually believe in snow until age 14. I just thought it was freezer chilled flour adults mashed into the ground once every couple years to convince us Santa was real. Thus, I am either a) not A Good Snowman Is Hard To Build‘s target audience at all or b) the perfect person to melt in the face of its powdery wiles, given that my experience with truly good snowmen – god-fearing snowmen – is almost non-existent. Given how much I enjoyed its gently puzzly demo, I’m leaning toward the latter. There’s finally a trailer now, so you can better understand what I saw in it. And oh goodness, they’ve added the ability to hug snowpeople. That’s… diabolical.
And here are the hugs. Goodness me, here are the hugs:
A Good Snowman Is Hard To Build, for the uninformed, is the work of Sokobond designer Alan Hazelden in collaboration with man of many talents Benjamin Davis and sound designer Ryan Roth. In short, it’s a puzzle game about building adorable snowpeople with names and a hunger for hugs.
The longer version is that you typically work with three snowballs, and each will grow a size if they roll over a patch of snow. Larger snowballs can’t go atop smaller ones, so you have to maneuver such that you don’t sabotage your own snowperson with carelessness. It is, then, a game of positioning, (lateral) thinking, and rethinking. The build I played was equal parts joyful and calming, with puzzles stumping me just enough while alternate paths assured I never flat-out gave up.
I’m pretty excited to see how the final game will turn out. Apparently it’ll be out sometime “before Christmas,” which is somewhat comical because it was originally conceived as a super quick project by Hazelden and co last Christmas. We get a neat puzzler out of the deal, though, so you certainly won’t hear me complaining.
Now then, the most important question of all: