10 July, 2010

Final Thoughts On The Void

written by Blain Newport on Saturday, 10 July, 2010


Honestly, I don't know what to think. On one hand, the game was weird and different, which I enjoyed. But behind the novelty there was a system that turned out to be broken in many ways. The lore of the game never makes sense, and there's never anyone explaining it to you who can be trusted. Even when you finish it, all you get is a poem that doesn't really tell you anything. Well, if you get one of the good endings, anyway. I became custodian of the void into perpetuity, ruling in hell, as it were. (Although technically the nightmare, which exists below the void, is hell.)

Since the game was going for a bleak, depressing vibe from the outset, I suppose it's not surprising that the endings are vague and meaningless. I definitely can't recommend the game. I guess I'd give it a three if I was going to review because I don't regret my time with it. But it felt like there was a lot missing.

In a way The Void is a lot like the old game NetHack. You can't know what you need to know on your first play. I was willing to go along with that and start over once, but only once. From then on it was strictly cheating. None of the mechanics where enjoyable enough to engage in them for their own sake.

But I still wonder about the void. Will the brothers I sent back to the nightmare ascend again? Would I eventually have resurrected the dead sister? But all I can do is know I'll never get answers and move on. It's healthy, but it's boring.

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