First, a confession: I grew up playing adventure games. Sierra, parser-based adventures, even. Later, point-and-click adventures. I was consistently terrible at them, right up to and through the ‘golden age’ of Lucasarts’ less sadistic designs. Those games hated me, and I often hated them in kind.
I loved Primordia, though (moreso than Nathan Grayson did, it seems), Wormwood’s short, sweet and perfectly paced puzzle adventure. The story and characters fascinated, and the puzzles satisfied without being obscure or frustrating, and the art was dark and moody while still being readable, bypassing the worst of pixel hunting.
As such, I’m rather excited for Strangeland, their next game. Lost in development hell for some time now, it’s almost ready for launch. Just a little bit further…
Originally planned as a quick project-between-projects after spending far too much time on Primordia, reality once again collided headlong with Wormwood’s three-man development crew, and the resulting pile-up led to a years-long, complex and messy development cycle that thankfully seems to be near it’s end. Rather than have the game bumble around in obscurity for years, Wormwood opted to save the announcement for near the end of development, and here we are.
Strangeland, as you can see from the trailer above, is a pointedly surreal point and click adventure set in a seemingly allegorical dreamscape. You can still see a lot of family resemblance to Primordia, right down to its rather disheveled, world-weary protagonist. Strange things are afoot, and a stranger in a strange land needs to Use Items with Other Items in order to solve some puzzles, presumably. It seems a safe bet, at least.
Strangeland promises to be a somewhat shorter experience than Primordia (which admittedly wasn’t the hugest of adventures to begin with), but that’s not going to dissuade me from pouncing on this one the moment it’s available. There’s no release date on this one at the moment – Wormwood are working out distribution and publishing, but it doesn’t sound far off at this point. You can soak in a little more of the game’s atmosphere in the announcement blog-post here, and we’ll be covering this the moment there’s something to get our grubby mitts on.