- Review Key Supplied By Developer
- Reviewed On Switch
- Also Available On PC
I’m not sure if “walking simulator” is a term that’s disrespectful of the game, because people do seem to look down on indies with minimal gameplay. Wide Ocean Big Jacket is a short narrative-driven indie about a family going on a camping trip while sorting their life out.
There’s not much to say of the gameplay as yes, you are just walking between scenes of dialogue, occasionally going to pick one item and dropping it at another location, but there’s no urgency of puzzle solving or exploration. You are here for the story and the beautiful 3D-paper cutout visuals, not much else.
You’ve got 20 brief (and I mean brief, this game runs through it all before you know it) chapters of experiencing camp life with Mord, Ben, Brad & Cloanne. I don’t know how much I could say about what happens in the story as the game really is about an hour, maybe less of said length. What I can say is that you will get plenty of investment out of these four, with relatable themes of growing up, repairing relationships and general maturity.
Its that pleasant coming-of-age tale that will warm your soul by the end, even if you don’t feel like playing through again. I mean, the game comes up with scenes where you get to choose between options creates the illusion of player-driven narrative, but I just had this feeling that my decision was going to lead to the same path either way.
I would have also liked for the dialogue to coincide with the beautiful graphics, instead of cutting to a black screen with text. Despite all this, I still found myself enjoying the game for the time it took to beat it. Yes, it was short, but it left an impact on me. I can relate to the situations here as I used to go on a some kind of a forest trip with family and had these thoughts/situations.
Again, I don’t know how much I could say without spoiling, as a lot is packed within that short time, but I found the writing to be excellent. I actually laughed at quite a few scenes going on as there’s some great humor. If you can accept the type of game and length of game Wide Ocean Big Jacket is, you’ll have a “Good” time.
It’s almost like watching a great short animated film or storybook that you’re interacting with, whether on PC or on Switch, where you could authentically take this game with you on a camping trip…that would be something.