Playdead Invites You INSIDE To…  Play Dead

Playdead Invites You INSIDE To… Play Dead

STORY: 8.5/10
VISUALS: 9.5/10
SOUND: 8/10
GAMEPLAY: 8/10

NOT JUST A BETTER LIMBO

I don’t know what I would have done if Playdead’s Limbo was released back in the NES or SNES days.  I don’t think I would have beaten it.  I’ll be the first to admit I had to rely on YouTube guides a few times to get past a few puzzles.  Maybe my mind wasn’t into it.  Maybe I’m just not that good at puzzle/platformers.  Regardless, Limbo was a fantastic and fun experience.  A unique take on a familiar genre that featured incredible visuals and a haunting atmosphere.

Playdead’s follow up, Inside, took everything I loved about Limbo and improved it.  But the team didn’t just settle for a ‘better’ Limbo, they raised the bar to impossible heights and delivered one of the best platforming experiences in years!

Inside is delightfully strange with some of the best puzzle design I’ve ever seen.  There isn’t a single moment in the game’s 2-3 hour campaign that felt unearned.  Every camera angle, lighting setup and visual clue is meticulously crafted to give you the necessary information to solve intricate puzzles.

I never got ‘stuck’ long enough to reach for my phone’s YouTube app.

WHAT IS ON THE INSIDE?

Inside’s graphical style is breathtaking and shows off Playdead’s true mastery of the genre.  Combined with nearly flawless gameplay makes Inside a must play before you even begin to dissect it’s creepy plot.

On the surface, Inside is about a young boy attempting to infiltrate a shady research lab and learn about the inhumane experiments within.

OR…

Inside is about a young boy trying to get AWAY from the research lab only to find himself being manipulated to go even further… Inside.

OR…  You get the idea.

I don’t want to get into spoilers here but let’s just say Inside definitely reaches unpredictable heights from unfathomable depths.  As I played through the final 10-20 minutes of Inside, I couldn’t help but smile at the creativity and commitment needed to pull off such a wacky and horrifying conclusion.

Overall, the story is up to interpretation and that’s why Inside scores highly with me.  I immediately listened to my favorite video game podcasts (Podcast Unlocked, Giant Bombcast, Kinda Funny Gamescast to name a few) for their insights into the story.

RETURNING INSIDE

As for my thoughts on the story?  I’m reserving final judgement until the day I play through the entire game again.  I want to pay more attention to the hints layered throughout.  That’s the beauty of this game.  You don’t need time trials, multiplayer or any other forced element to extend the gameplay.  Playdead created a perfect 2-3 hour experience.  An experience I can’t wait to experience again.

(9/10 E’s)

SWEEEEEEEEET!

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