◉ ◉ ◉ ◉ ○(4/5: great)
Playstation 5
Something We Made (2021)
When your grandma tells you to go and take pictures of stuff, you oblige her!

Listen, if you're a hard-hearted fool who disrespects your grandma, this game ain't for you, chum. However, if you're a person that lives for grandma's cookies, sacrifices some minor inconvenience for her comfort, and straight up loves your elders, get this game and prepare to have the strings of your heart tugged, my friend.

The plot of the game is, basically, "Go take a picture of a thing." The mechanics are, predictably, taking pictures of things, but also interacting with stuff and navigating a charming world in various clever ways! Your goal along the way to taking the final picture is to help out the world you're in and gain stamps on your community card, which you can then show to a person to get a bus ride to the next town along the journey. Simple, yet captivating due to the design and gameplay.

The world of Toem (a roughly Scandanavian place, it seems) is a rotatable, isometric 3-D world of hand-drawn characters, buildings, terrains, and more. The art style and feel of the world are similar to the great OlliOlli World with the cartoon style, mumble-languages, and jovial tone. Each NPC has a personality and charm that keep you going to get them ice cream or keep you from getting too annoyed when they splash mud on your camera. The stamp-gathering quests never felt stale or tedious, even when I felt I had to cheat a little bit to find that last plant to water or whatever (I got about 95% complete by myself, calm down). The soundtrack is varied and "chill", as the kids say, but the default option of a 4-minute gap of silence between songs was kind of weird. I did like the reminder to take a break every once in a while even though I staunchly ignored it as I devoured this game.

This game is a joy to play, look at, and listen to. Just about my only complaint is that I 100% completed the game in less than 7 hours and I definitely could have spent longer taking pictures of stuff and talking with the affable, delightful denizens of this lovely little world.

So, hug your grandma and get this game!

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Last updated: 08/04/2023
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