Right, listen. There hasn't been a single good goose-based goof, joke, edit, photoshop, tweet or otherwise made in the five months since House House let Untitled Goose Game loose upon the world. Slapping the feathered devil into any old context just doesn't cut it, and the phrase "and you are a horrible goose" is a patter abyss - this is the hill I choose to die on. But VR developer Sam Chiet may have broken that trend with Desktop Goose, a digital companion that walks the walk, honks the honk, and causes chaos upon your poor PC.
Look at them up there, ruining our Untitled Goose Game review's lovely header image with photo edits and to-do lists. The goose has more in his bag of tricks, too, as demonstrated in Chiet's showcase trailer below.
For the most part, the oddly-cylindrical goose will meander around your monitor. Sometimes they'll pop off-screen for a moment, returning to track mud all over your desktop. Daft, but ultimately harmless.
But the goose isn't content to merely take a stroll through your desktop wallpaper. They'll nick your mouse cursor. They'll drag on their collection of goose-themed memes from off-screen. They'll even open up a notepad window to start typing things like "I cause problems on purpose." And they'll do all this even while you're in-game - though it's worth noting a substantial performance hit if you try that. Oh, the price you pay for a mild chortle and severely compromised gameplay.
An updated version now lets you control just how aggressive you want the goose to be. It'll also let you load their collection with as many of your own images as you like. I anticipate some bold digital goose art collaborations in future.
Desktop Goose is available to pay-what-you-want over on Itch.io. Oh, and because the creator's comments are exploding - yes, you can evict the goose. Holding escape for a good ten seconds or so will banish your feathered friend, handing back complete control of your desktop. You're welcome.
For five minutes and zero up-front cost, it's a novel little timewaster. But I could hardly talk about desktop pets without mentioning Nathalie Lawhead's Cyberpet Graveyard (also via Itch), a collection of curious software companions and short stories buried away in forgotten file directories
With software like this, who needs real human companionship?