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I was certain he'd never come home . . .
November 17, 2010 9:36 PM   Subscribe

But that was [yesterday] is a flash game about learning to move forward.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi (50 comments total) 64 users marked this as a favorite

 
Thoroughly enjoyable.
posted by Made of Star Stuff at 9:59 PM on November 17, 2010


I thought that was fantastic. Perfect for the introspective half-hour before bed.
posted by sarahnade at 10:04 PM on November 17, 2010


See also Elude, a similarly arthouse game which attempts to capture the ups and downs of (manic?) depression.
posted by Rhaomi at 10:08 PM on November 17, 2010 [6 favorites]


That game was great. Short, simple, and I really like the message.
posted by yeloson at 10:17 PM on November 17, 2010


Uh, I bounced into the wall of black chaos about 20 times and finally gave up.
posted by ottereroticist at 10:24 PM on November 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


You need to listen to the nice characters, and ignore what the wall of black chaos tells you.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 10:28 PM on November 17, 2010 [6 favorites]


I lost a very close friend this year. Flash games don't normally make me cry. Thank you for this post.
posted by motty at 10:32 PM on November 17, 2010 [5 favorites]


That is a stunner. Wow.
posted by empath at 10:36 PM on November 17, 2010


Similar experience here, Motty. It felt like this game achieved in a few minutes what it took almost two years of therapy to do for me. Really, well done.
posted by KingEdRa at 10:40 PM on November 17, 2010


So what I'm getting from this is, when you're out walking in the snow, and you run into the Gulf of Mexico, look the other way and it will leave?
posted by bicyclefish at 10:54 PM on November 17, 2010


You need to listen to the nice characters, and ignore what the wall of black chaos tells you.

But the dog kept telling me to go into the wall of black chaos.
posted by ottereroticist at 10:55 PM on November 17, 2010


But the dog kept telling me to go into the wall of black chaos.

He's right . . . eventually.

Mouseover for spoilers.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 11:05 PM on November 17, 2010


Figured it out eventually. Clever you on the spoiler mouseover thingie!
posted by ottereroticist at 11:21 PM on November 17, 2010


Once he learns how to jump, the green friend is always there in the background when he jumps. Once he learns how to swing, the pink girl is always there swinging along with him. It's sweet how he carries them with him.
posted by IndigoRain at 1:22 AM on November 18, 2010 [3 favorites]


I've been walking for ages and I haven't found the citadel or the punch powerup. What am I doing wrong?
posted by Joe in Australia at 1:33 AM on November 18, 2010


that affected me more than any other video game ever. boards of canada type music was good as well.
posted by triceryclops at 1:54 AM on November 18, 2010


The clock on the wall actually shows the correct time, but just ticks back and forth. Nice touch.
posted by teraflop at 2:00 AM on November 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


The dog is also there whenever you turn your back on the void. Great detailing.

*powers up, shoots fireballs at black void boss*
posted by benzenedream at 2:07 AM on November 18, 2010


Whoashit. This is why I should not do these introspective things before bed. Augh. I need a hug. That was beautiful.
posted by Schlimmbesserung at 2:08 AM on November 18, 2010


Very nice. (I want a swing, now.)
posted by maxwelton at 2:43 AM on November 18, 2010


So, there are multiple endings supposedly, I guess where you are 'reunited' with different people at the end; and I didn't get the one I wanted, and honestly, that took too long for me to bother to try to get another ending. (But, I would still appreciate spoilers on how to get all the endings, if anyone happens to know...)

I did not cry at all when playing this. Am I am heartless?
posted by yeoz at 2:44 AM on November 18, 2010


I guess the pacing lost me. After bumping my head a bunch, letting the void recede a few times, and walking several screens and seeing nothing different, I gave up.
posted by Menthol at 2:56 AM on November 18, 2010


Metafilter: You need to listen to the nice characters, and ignore what the wall of black chaos tells you.
posted by RokkitNite at 5:08 AM on November 18, 2010 [6 favorites]


That...that was one of the best games I've ever played. I loved, loved, LOVED the memories of his friend and her. And the swing!

Absolutely great, thanks!
posted by nomadicink at 5:59 AM on November 18, 2010


aha... for the different endings, check the clock on the wall in the hospital...
posted by russm at 6:18 AM on November 18, 2010


Now if I could only do this in real life....
posted by briank at 6:20 AM on November 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


This is one of the best examples of videogames-as-art that I've ever seen. Thanks!
posted by oulipian at 6:43 AM on November 18, 2010


Wow. I am not a gamer - I play maybe 5 flash games a year - and this really affected me. Beautiful and touching.
posted by desjardins at 7:47 AM on November 18, 2010


I'm sorry; the princess is in another castle.

Beautiful. I miss my dog.
posted by steambadger at 7:52 AM on November 18, 2010


Is there anything to this besides the one discovery of how to move forward? I've been walking forward a long time, and nothing else has happened.
posted by jacquilynne at 8:04 AM on November 18, 2010


PhoBWan has the answer.
posted by ottereroticist at 8:22 AM on November 18, 2010


Somebody send this to Ebert.
posted by klangklangston at 8:28 AM on November 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


Is there anything to this besides the one discovery of how to move forward?

Keep moving forward, eventually you'll learn to jump and swing.
posted by nomadicink at 8:48 AM on November 18, 2010


It's nice to see an "art game" that's about loneliness and loss that isn't about wallowing in the gloom like most of these seem to be.

Stuff does get better eventually but so many art games seem to be saying "it never gets better, give up now".
posted by egypturnash at 9:33 AM on November 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


The first time I played it ended with the girl.

The second time was with the dog, very cool, much better!
posted by nomadicink at 9:35 AM on November 18, 2010


A fine storytelling casual game.

Pacing was tricky, almost a test of the player's patience.

And there's a pedagogy here, teaching us how to play it - nearly an emotional tutorial.
posted by doctornemo at 10:24 AM on November 18, 2010


There are multiple endings? I was very happy with dog ending, so much so that I didn't kick my dog out of the bed last night.
posted by KingEdRa at 10:53 AM on November 18, 2010


Wow. Thanks for making me cry in my cubicle. Now I'll have a bunch of green guys tormenting me the rest of the day.
posted by DigDoug at 12:02 PM on November 18, 2010


I like how it's impossible to move backwards.
posted by desjardins at 12:42 PM on November 18, 2010 [3 favorites]


I feel stupid for asking this, but I've been trying different combinations of keystrokes/mouse gestures for 5 minutes and I still can't move. There's no cursor, either. Am I stupid?
posted by fiercecupcake at 1:16 PM on November 18, 2010


oh my god did I just ask MeFi if I'm stupid? what possessed me?
posted by fiercecupcake at 1:16 PM on November 18, 2010


Try the arrow keys. All you need is left, right, and up.

You're not stupid, just special!
posted by nomadicink at 1:20 PM on November 18, 2010


Update: it was just something about my work computer that hated it. Worked just fine at home.

Worth the wait. That was touching.
posted by fiercecupcake at 3:25 PM on November 18, 2010


That was lovely. So sweet and so true.
posted by pywacket at 9:04 PM on November 18, 2010


This was amazing, elude left me feeling really depressed. I like games about sadness and loss that end on a positive note.
posted by tehloki at 11:17 PM on November 18, 2010


What a tasteful epilogue to Avatar.
posted by pollex at 5:14 AM on November 19, 2010


I don't care what that dog says to you, HE IS NOT YOUR FRIEND.
posted by pollex at 5:14 AM on November 19, 2010


Ok, I've played and played and played. I always get the [mouseover for spoiler] ending. If anyone should discover how to get other endings, please MeMail me.
posted by MeiraV at 8:55 AM on November 21, 2010


MeiraV: The ending you get is completely dependent on the time of day in your computer's clock. You need to change your clock four hours ahead each time to get the other two.

SPOILER DISCUSSION BELOW:
I really liked this game. I got all choked up while playing. Personally, I think the ending with the boy is the most thematically appropriate. I don't need a happy ending where someone comes back and so you didn't lose them after all. No, the ending is already happy without that: he's managed to move on and find a new path forward exactly because of the joy and growth he gained while being with his friends. Having them come back is like saying, "Yes, you should be happy and move forward, because you didn't physically lose them in the first place, they just went on hiatus." Rather than, "You've lost them physically, but they'll always be with you."


I also feel compelled to recommend another flash game, Don't Look Back, for any of you who liked this. Another meditation on loss, with a different perspective. And that's all I will say about it. Based on the greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice.
posted by kingjoeshmoe at 12:29 PM on November 22, 2010


Don't Look Back is phenomenal. Definitely recommend it to anyone who liked this game.
posted by joedan at 2:50 PM on November 22, 2010


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