Game Review : A Space for the Unbound (2023)

Platform :PC,Xbox, Playstation 4 and 5, Nitendo Switch
Genre : Adventure
Publisher : Toge Production
Develover : Mojiken
Revenue : Estimate: ~$750,000
Release Date : Jan, 19 2023

A Space for the Unbound is a beautiful narrative adventure game that deals with anxiety and depression in a raw and powerful way. Developed by Mojiken Studio and published by Toge Productions, it follows the story of Atma, a teenage boy living in a rural town in Indonesia in the 1990s. The game’s setting is a mix of the nostalgic everyday and the paranormal, blending them together to create a unique experience that draws players in from the start.

The game begins with a traumatic prologue that sets the tone for the rest of the story. A Space for the Unbound deals with some heavy themes, but it does so with an earnestness and sincerity that is both refreshing and compelling. As the story progresses, players will find themselves wrapped up in the lives of Atma and his friends as they navigate the difficulties of school life and beyond.

The rural town that serves as the game’s primary setting is both quaint and otherworldly, featuring familiar waypoints of adolescence such as first dates, school reports, and Game Boys, all of which anchor players in a place that is both specific and unfamiliar. For Indonesian players specifically, there are plenty of references to traditional music, comfort food, and historic festivals, which only add to the game’s sense of authenticity.

The gameplay in A Space for the Unbound is focused on exploration, puzzle-solving, and a unique mechanic called Spacedive. With the help of a magic book, Atma can dive into the minds, or ‘hearts’, of obstinate people who get in his way, rearranging their thoughts to change their minds. While the puzzles are simple at first, they gradually become more complex and sophisticated, involving diving into minds within minds, into timelines within timelines, and collecting objects from the past to put them into sockets into a mind.

Along with the Spacedive mechanic, players will collect bottle caps, fill out pages of a mysterious storybook-cum-prophecy, work through a nightmarish obsession with cats, and laugh at the game’s dry little one-liners from townsfolk. A Space for the Unbound is quietly funny when it wants to be, with humour peppering the game when least expected.

One of the game’s biggest strengths is the way it mixes familiarity and unreality together, throwing players off and bamboozling them into dropping their guard. The way Mojiken has managed to do this across cultures is quite something, making something so specific to one place and time feel so universal.

While the game can feel directionless at times, it serves a purpose in bedding players into the world and lulling them into a kind of dreamlike comfort. The storyless moments also give players a chance to soak up the game’s beautiful and nostalgic setting, which is both comforting and magical.

A Space for the Unbound is a messy game, and that’s the point. It deals with messy subject matter, and there are no tidy answers. But when players step back to view it as a whole, they’ll see the magic in the game’s messiness. The story is a desperately sad one, dealing with claustrophobia, panic, inevitability, and the playing off of comfort and existential danger. The game’s shattering climax is a testament to the game’s ability to move players on a deep and profound level.

In conclusion, A Space for the Unbound is a beautiful game that is both nostalgic and magical. Its setting is a mix of the everyday and the paranormal, blending them together to create a unique and unforgettable experience. The game’s Spacedive mechanic, along with its exploration and puzzle-solving elements, make for an engaging and rewarding gameplay experience. The game’s messy subject matter is handled with

System Requirements

Minimum:

  • OS: Windows 7 or later
  • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo E6320 or equivalent
  • Memory: 2 GB RAM
  • Graphics: GeForce 7600 512 Mb or equivalent
  • DirectX: Version 9.0c
  • Storage: 2 GB available space
  • Sound Card: DirectX Compatible Sound Card with latest drivers

Recommended:

  • OS: Windows 10
  • Processor: Intel Core i5 6600 or equivalent
  • Memory: 4 GB RAM
  • Graphics: GeForce GTX 750 Ti or equivalent
  • DirectX: Version 11
  • Storage: 2 GB available space
  • Sound Card: DirectX Compatible Sound Card with latest drivers

Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • Beautiful and unique setting that blends the everyday and paranormal, providing a nostalgic and magical experience.
  • Engaging gameplay that involves exploration, puzzle-solving, and a unique Spacedive mechanic.
  • Deals with heavy themes such as anxiety and depression in a raw and powerful way, making for a deeply moving and profound experience.
  • Quietly funny at times, with humour peppered throughout the game when least expected.
  • Authentic representation of Indonesian culture, providing a sense of familiarity for Indonesian players.

Cons:

  • Directionless at times, which may frustrate some players who prefer more structure in their games.
  • Some may find the game’s messy subject matter and lack of tidy answers to be unsatisfying.
  • The Spacedive mechanic, while unique, may not be to everyone’s liking.
  • The game’s heavy themes and emotional content may be triggering or difficult for some players to handle.

A Space for the Unbound : It's a great game that's definitely worth playing. Axelia

8
von 10
2023-05-03T13:15:18-0400

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