I’ve never had a picnic of stolen goods before. Looking down at my picnic rug complete with overturned thermos and sandwiches chucked on the ground, I’m actually pretty proud of myself…and so it begins. Who knew that being a goose could be so much fun?
But then again, I’m not just having fun. I’m a very busy goose with a to-do list. Trap a boy in a phone booth, steal some keys, put a bucket on a man’s head…the list goes on. The fact that all of these cause the people in the game to go mental is besides the point. Chaos be damned. I’ve got a job to do.
These are the sort of thoughts that’ll fly through your head as you embark on House House’s latest creation, Untitled Goose Game. The title’s confusing. I mean, I could think of a dozen better titles. “You Silly Goose.” “Having a Gander.” And my personal favourite, “Honk if You’re Ready to Pâté.” Goose puns aside, this game is one heck of a gem.
Step into a village that Beatrix Potter’s characters would feel at home in. Farms, garage sales and gardens adorned with ceramic ornaments are just some of the scenarios you’ll encounter. It’s a place riddled with simple-minded human beings. Humans who just want to read the paper or play a round of darts in peace. Enter one goose (that’s you) who’s been given a bunch of tasks. Tasks which aren’t all that straightforward all the time. Like, how do you get someone to buy back their own stuff? Or swap someone’s glasses out for another pair? This is hampered by the fact that the villagers often freak out when they see you making off with any of their carefully-placed things. So stealth mode is often the way to go. You can flap your wings and you can honk, but more often than not, you’ll find yourself crouching around a pile of paraphernalia, waiting for that moment to strike. It’s the sort of thing you could imagine real geese doing.
I found out the hard way that it’s possible to cause so much anarchy that you can’t achieve your goals. Yup – you can be a giant nuisance even to yourself. But fortunately this is easily remedied by a reset button. It saves your accomplishments but restores the world so that you can terrorize the village anew.
Causing any sort of bedlam initiates a piano soundtrack which is perfectly timed to the pandemonium. I had to marvel at this so many times. I’ll even admit to causing more chaos than necessary just so that I could see how fluid this accompaniment was (very).
Honestly, this game is such a work of art that I promise you’ll find it hard not to do gratuitous “tasks” just so you can experience this game to its fullest. There’s even a bit of a story line which is superb in its simplicity. But even when that’s over, the game awards you with additional, more complicated tasks that’ll keep you playing for longer than you intended.
So my next task? Give the game to a friend so I can watch and LOL all over again.