verena and jonas kyratzes’ new game, the sea will claim everything, is exactly the sort of adventure game i was complaining about yesterday: every character you meet sends you on a quest to fetch some item for them that you can then trade for a an alchemical ingredient that combines with a bunch of other ingredients to produce an item that you have to trade to another character. jonas’ whimsical prose gives the game a rich texture, but it’s often hard to find, say, a single critical alchemical ingredient in a screen covered in wadjets and doohickeys and clickable things. i got stuck twice, for a long time, because i had failed to click the correct tiny object, and in both cases had to retrace the entire available world to find the item in question. that’s actually much better than average for games like this.
(hint: the amulet is on the second screen of the area you’re sent to search for it in.)
but the sea is worth playing, because it’s about the social responsibility of being a member of a community, and it’s rare to play any game written by adults for adults. and for the game’s childish sense of whimsy and delight, this game is the product of the social conscience of an adult.
the game has to be purchased as part of a bundle of games that i mostly know nothing about, although the shivah is also worth playing. and the bundle is one of those pay-what-you-want deals that are in vogue right now – you can get the game, at present, for less than three dollars, and a couple dollars more gets you the shivah.
EDIT: the sea will claim everything is now available on its own for ten bucks.
in a couple more days there will probably be a decent walkthrough.