JiG is on Patreon and Needs You! Click here for more information


  • Review

  • Download Games

Living Playground


(18 votes) *Average rating will show after 20 votes
Comments (1) | Views (10,508)

Living Playground

Dora[Mac user? Try freeware tool RPG Hub]

In Meaka's surreal free indie horror adventure Living Playground, Octavio, Tony, and Pablo are just your average kids who also happen to turn into playground equipment, out to hunt up the best snails they can find at an old factory. When a shadowy figure attacks, Tony finds herself trapped inside and separated from her brothers, and following pieces of a story that might be even stranger than a bunch of kids who can turn into playground equipment. To play, just use the [arrow] keys to move and the [spacebar] to interact. While all items are used automatically wherever they're needed and you can only save the game in certain places, opening the menu with [ESC] allows you to access the Skills submenu, which lets you transform Tony to and from her slide form, which can help in certain situations. While there are no battles, Tony and the others can still take damage from certain things, and they have limited hit-points, so be wary of danger. Living Playground's odd premise may raise an eyebrow, but expressive artwork, loveable characters, and a story that combines classic fairytales with a look at family and identity makes it an impressive, engrossing game adventure fans should definitely check out.

Living PlaygroundLiving Playground bills itself more as a "morbid puzzle" than a horror game, which is mostly accurate... despite some rare well-executed jumpscares, the game is more creepy than actually scary for most of its run. While the area design does unfortunately tend towards large, open areas without a whole lot of visual interest, the atmosphere still manages to be excellent thanks to a moody soundtrack and the way the kids feel constantly menaced. It's hard to have children in any sort of narrative where peril is involved and not wind up with them feeling like token plot moppets, but Tony and her brothers are so genuine and funny you can't help but root for them. From Tony's sweet optimism and bravery in the face of danger to the way Pablo's bratty teasing hides his true feelings, and Octavio's selfless peacemaking that makes him seem wise beyond his years, Living Playground's main cast is so effortlessly likable that you'll forget about the whole "plastic" thing in short order as being weird at all... which is sort of the point. Of course, this makes the otherworldly wrongness they encounter that more alarming, and the core message of the game, and its views on humanity and family, tempers the storybook tone with just the right touches of maturity and warmth.

Living Playground isn't necessarily a difficult game, especially thanks to the way the game smartly uses appropriate items when needed so you don't spend your time trying to suss out "adventure game logic". The kids' transformation abilities are used sparingly so they don't feel like a gimmick, and the puzzles strike a nice balance between your usual "find the item, use the item" fetch-quests and a few codes or problems you'll need to use your brain to solve. That said, since so much of your time is spent wandering around empty areas, it still feels like there could have been a few more of those puzzles and encounters, though at least most areas are designed to minimize tedious wandering by including maps, helpful clues, or just multiple save points. Despite a few finicky moments, Living Playground plays very smoothly, making it all the more impressive that this is Meaka's first game. Living Playground's premise sounds like the sort of thing that could be a joke or just strange for strangeness' sake, but instead winds up serving the plot fantastically and tells a story with an unexpected amount of heart along the way. Even if you don't typically like "scary" games, Living Playground is still highly recommended, and is smart, creative, creepy and bittersweet in all the right places.

WindowsWindows:
Get the free full version

Mac OS XMac OS X:
Not available.
Try Boot Camp or Parallels or CrossOver Games.

1 Comment

^ Scroll Up | Homepage >

Leave a comment [top of page]

Please consider creating a Casual Gameplay account if you're a regular visitor here, as it will allow us to create an even better experience for you. Sign-up here!
  • PLEASE UNDERSTAND SITE POLICIES BEFORE POSTING COMMENTS
  • You may use limited HTML tags for style:
    (a href, b, br/, strong, em, ul, ol, li, code, spoiler)
    HTML tags begin with a less-than sign: < and end with a greater-than sign: >. Always. No exceptions.
  • To post spoilers, please use spoiler tags: <spoiler> example </spoiler>
    If you need help understanding spoiler tags, read the spoiler help.
  • Please Preview your comment before posting, especially when using spoilers!
  • No link dropping, no domains as names; do not spam, and do not advertise! (rel="nofollow" in use)
6,525 Views
5 Comments
Yellow> chrpa The new game from Bart Bonte is sharp yellow and black. The first-signal system activates! Wasps! Hornets! Caution Bio-Hazard! Caution Wet Floor! Slow Down! The last one is correct, no need to hurry anywhere, we've got awesome relaxing game with...  ...
11,866 Views
5 Comments
The Basement Escape> chrpa Huzzah! Tesshi-e is back with another excellent game! First, don't panic after you notice the intro screen you've seen before. Yes, it's from The Escape Hotel 3: Remake released last summer. Tesshi-e just revisited his favourite hotel, lost his way...  ...
7,460 Views
10 Comments
Weekday Escape N°151> chrpa Hi! The new Weekday Escape is here bringing three fantastic games! Lutaru gives us a box for playing, with a small button here and a tiny hole there and waits until we figure out what to do with it. After...  ...
6,166 Views
18 Comments
Weekday Escape N°150> chrpa Maybe you are on holiday, maybe you are planning it and maybe you don't have any. Anyway, Weekday Escape is here as a short break for everybody! Well, not so short, in fact. The first game is from Detarame Factory...  ...
Rullo

Recent Comments

 

Display 5 more comments
Limit to the last 5 comments

Game of the week


Lost Lands: Ice Spell Collector's Edition

Your Favorite Games edit

add
Save links to your favorite games here. Use the Favorites editor.

Monthly Archives