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Wanderment


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Rating: 3.9/5 (27 votes)
Comments (3) | Views (7,872)

Wanderment

Created in just 72 hours for #CloneJamLord, Andrew C. Wang's Wanderment is a simple yet also simply lovely little pleasant-sigh-inducing platformer set in a 3D space about a blind kitten exploring its surroundings as it travels across town to find its friend. Though you can't see, you can sense objects around you by the sounds they make, as well as your own proximity to them, and they're represented by cascades of abstract particle effects. Use [WASD] or the [arrow] keys to explore everywhere (remember, the space is 3D, so don't just go left and right!), and tap the [spacebar] to jump. The goal isn't to barrel around and try to find your friend as fast as possible, but rather to take your time and explore, making Wanderment most successful as an interactive art piece. Despite its relative simplicity, Wanderment manages to live up to its name, a combination of "wander" and "wonderment", by making you delight in your surroundings as they're revealed in artful, stylized particle representations, though this can sometimes be a little chaotic to interpret when you're trying to figure out where you are in relation to certain objects for platforming... understandable for a blind kitten, but potentially frustrating for a two-legged human. For all its short development time and simplicity, however, Wanderment still manages to deliver a charming and creative little experience that, with some polish and expansion, would make a gem of a full-fledged game.

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3 Comments

-=MarkR=- August 5, 2015 1:12 PM

Just one spoiler:

Jump!

Reply
fuzzyface August 6, 2015 3:41 AM

Could be the basis of a wonderful open-world-themed game.

Right now its just an intersting variation of a pipe-shooter but ultimately its just yet anothey pipe-shooter runner.

Reply

The whimsical music and sound effects were great, but I didn't care for the mechanic. A lot of the scenery seemed really plain (with inexplicable pits! This was not a kitten friendly neighborhood) and the platforms appeared to be nothing more than floating rectangles. It came across as the blindness mechanic was just being used to justify hiding the low quality terrain.

I think I'd have enjoyed the game more if the kitten could see normally, and more effort was put into making the scenery lovely, or if the game let you permanently "paint" the scenery like in Unfinished Swan. Maybe the blindness mechanic would work in a puzzle game where you rotate an invisible object and "ping" it to try and identify it from the silhouette.

It was short and unusual, but the gimmick seemed to detract rather than add to the whole. I think the design needs a new direction.

Reply

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