When you think minimalist gaming you probably think of the Atari 2600. That era of consoles had to rely on good gameplay with great controls to keep the player interested. They didn’t have awesome HD graphics and 7.1 surround sound to work with. Those crutches would come a couple of decades later. That is what attracts me to independent and homebrew developers, often they are saddled with similar restraints. Take Exit by nukeSpoon for example. This is one of those minimalist style games that is using modern technology quite well. It is in the style of the original Nintendo Game Boy but it is a first person atmospheric adventure. Find out if it is better than you think after the jump.
The first thing you will notice about Exit is the complete lack of color outside of some shades of green. Ah, the good old Nintendo Game Boy days. When you start moving around the world of Exit you realize this is much more than what Nintendo’s handheld could pull off. Detail is very focused and grainy- like a Sega CD full motion video game.
The atmosphere of Exit is very well done. You can only see just enough of your surroundings. The mood is helped quite a bit by your flashlight dying at the most inopportune time it could. Then there are the audio effects – things happen just out of view, or behind you. Those moments actually left me wondering, should I investigate that sound? That is good game design.
The gameplay is all puzzle and exploration based. There are no enemies to encounter and there are no dangers other than not figuring out the current puzzle. It is all on your shoulders. Think the Saw puzzles without the blood and gore and not quite so limited in your mobility within them. Figure it out or stay forever.
Exit is available on Itch.io for free. Head over, grab a copy, maybe make an account and say thanks to nukeSpoon for their hard work and ingenuity.