Have You Played? is an endless stream of game recommendations. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time.
Truthfully, I don’t remember all the ins and outs of To The Moon’s [official site] lackadaisical storytelling, but perhaps that is funny in itself, considering how important decaying memory is to the tale. But the enduring feeling of the game is one of wistful melancholy. Is “wistful melancholy” a thing? Yes, it is. If RPS was to have a list feature titled “Ten Games Wot Made Us Somewhat Lumpy-Throated”, this game would surely hang within the upper echelons.
The player controls two doctors who work for a company that will re-engineer a dying person’s memory to relieve them of their biggest regrets. Sauntering backwards through the memories of their latest patient, Johnny, you discover a painful, touching story of loss and love. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is the obvious comparison, but To The Moon has a character all of its own.
While it is an essentially sad tale, it never forgets to lighten the mood between major scenes. It’s a tactic that could so easily be jarring or off-putting and yet Freebird Games manages to come out of it smelling sweeter than a bag of Jolly Ranchers. This is mood-swingy storytelling at its best.