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Freeware Garden: A Postcard from Afthonia

It’s been a couple years since I last used a portal to visit the magnificent and otherworldly Lands of Dream and I now realize just how deeply I had missed them. I had missed the amazing sense of wonder Jonas and Verena Kyratzes have poured into every locale, the giggling at dozens of little jokes hidden behind mushrooms and flowers, the clicking on every tiny detail, the exquisite writing, the wonderfully surreal characters, the glorious puns, the richness of ideas and that deep sense of hope and beauty.

Having just played through the brilliant Postcard from Afthonia I’m already missing the Lands of Dream even more.

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I want to meet more bats, clearly Oceanic Red specimens, who strongly oppose vigilantism and believe that change can only be achieved through the organized mass action of the proletariat, you see. I want to talk to Jeff the scuba diving giraffe again and have another stroll in the caves the brother to a very famous Cyclops calls home. I want to think and appreciate things and get inspired while sitting on my PC pointing and clicking at things.

Failing that, or at least until another Lands of Dream game gets released, what I really need to do is to share the sheer beauty of A Postcard from Afthonia with you. I’d dance naked next to a giant tortoise to convince you to play it if I could, but I can’t. I have a cold and turtles of all sorts seem to ignore me, so I’ll pathetically resort to the Socratic way and ask you a few questions:

Do you enjoy games that can be as powerful as literature? Would like to help Kyon the Dog and Antigone the Cat have the Oracle prophesize their child’s future? Do you appreciate it when serious, adult subjects are approached in a simultaneously silly and mature way? Do you believe that William Blake can offer great inspiration? Have you grown sick of Star Wars references? Have you been waiting for a sequel to The Sea Will Claim Everything? Do you love being entertained in a most cerebral way?

Answer yes to at least three of the above and you already know this is a game for you. One that comes with the delightful children book drawings of Verena Kyratzes and another magical sountrack by Chris Christodoulou.

[Disclaimer: Jonas Kyratzes is a good friend of mine and I do irrationally adore the Lands of Dreams — oddly, they are the only games I show my non-gaming friends.]

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Konstantinos Dimopoulos


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