“Oh! Well of course! That explains everything.” Have you ever discovered something unexpected about a game’s makers then seen that game’s quirks as caused by that fact?
I resist those thoughts, as they’re often reductive at best, but had that moment yesterday playing Void & Meddler. It’s a short, free, cyberpunk adventure game made by the folks behind No Wave, a game Adam took a shine to. And as soon as I found out they were French, some lousy part of my head decided Void & Meddler is just so French. Good job, you.
Away from that foolish thought, I like how Void & Meddler drops us right into stealing something our character knows as little about as we do. I like its colourful characters. I like their exaggerated animation. I like the scene where we take 35 seconds to walk down a street, the city buzzing around us. I really like some of the environments. I like its sinister tone. I like how it doesn’t explain weird things we see. I like its few game over screens and that I found out by accident it even had game overs. On reflection, I think I do like that it doesn’t have saves; it made me not bluster through, falling back on reloading, and a joke in the intro makes it a good looping point if you do die. I like its music. I like it.
I still say the humanoid animals living amongst people remind me of Little Big Adventure and Beyond Good & Evil, and its language mistakes do remind me of French phrasing. Anyway. Thanks, lousy brain desperately scrabbling at connections and stereotypes.
Void & Meddler was made by Dorian SRed and Trevor Reveur, the No Wave duo, with artist ‘Gom’ in November’s Point and Click Jam. It gave folks given 15 days to make a retro-style adventure game with a choice of retro colour palettes. It ends with everything unresolved but I quite like that too, given how we’re dropped into the start of the story anyway.