October 5, 2019 9:28 PM   Subscribe

Wilmot's Warehouse [YouTube][Launch Trailer] “In the game, you control Wilmot, a square person who is in charge of a warehouse full of similarly sized squares with pictures on them that abstractly represent what they contain. One might have a bird head on it, while another might have an alternating series of red-and-white diagonal lines. As Wilmot, it’s up to you to run the warehouse by organizing it however you see fit and retrieving items from it when requested. This naturally splits the game into two separate stages, which manage to test your puzzle-solving abilities in different ways. The organization stage tests how good you are at sorting everything in the warehouse while also planning ahead. During the retrieval stage, you’ll need to remember where you put things, and you’ll also learn if you made your warehouse navigable.” [via: The Verge]

• Wilmot’s Warehouse is a small piece of chaotic zen [Polygon]
“It’s that organization that’s the key to doing well. Since my warehouse is so large, and I only have so much time to store, retrieve, and deliver each order, I have to decide where each item belongs using whichever system I think will work best. If I can come up with a system to help me remember where everything is, then I can swiftly put together deliveries, and retrieve and fulfill order requests from my coworkers. It’s a simple challenge to describe, but it’s anything but simple to do it well. My systems don’t have to be very complicated for the first few rounds of play, either. A shipment might come in with some red apples, a handful of trumpets, and an object that looks like a gate from a Japanese garden. Based on that, it makes sense to make a section of the warehouse for food, another for musical instruments, and finally a spot for outdoor decorations. I make three piles near the back of the warehouse so I can deliver the items as quickly as possible, which is how I earn stars that I can spend on upgrades like the ability to do a quick dash to move faster. But the types of objects I receive as the game continues makes these decisions harder and harder.”
• Memory and meaning melt away in Wilmot's Warehouse, out now [Rock Paper Shotgun]
“It’s a puzzle game about storing and delivering objects – lots of them, under time pressure. It came out yesterday, and should appeal to anyone who’s ever been secretly pleased when vast quantities of different-coloured beads have scattered across the living room. Or got a buzz from placing cutlery in the right receptacle. I’ve played for ten minutes and already have a pile I’m referring to as “circles I don’t understand”. I think most people will like this, to be honest. Especially after seeing Pip’s evident delight in the trailer. [...] You’re given fine control over moving multiple boxes in a way that’s fiddly at first, but before long I know I’ll be towing boxes from all four of my weirdly sticky sides. Some objects seem to just be abstract shapes, which has already lead to me deciding something is a boat for convenience’s sake. I’m worried I’ve already sown the seeds of my own destruction.”
• Wilmot's Warehouse Is A Great Puzzle Game [Kotaku]
“Things started off fine for me this afternoon. I dubbed a category “mouth stuff” and filled it with toothbrushes, pills, and teeth. I had another category I called “day at the beach” that had fishhooks and what I decided were shark fins, near another pillar titled “weird blue shapes.” “Weird blue shapes” initially included what looked kind of like a yellow bird beak on a blue background, which I put there because I was in a hurry and because it was blue. But as the items in “day at the beach” grew more diverse, I decided the beaks were better off there, representing seagulls. Later in my play session, some Jesus fish appeared, and I panicked. Did they go in “day at the beach” because they were fish? Did they go in “weird blue shapes” because they were blue? They were kind of religious, so should they go near the ghosts and Shinto shrines in a category I’d dubbed “ghosts and Shinto shrines”?”
• Wilmot's Warehouse is a puzzler with an intriguing roominess at its centre [Eurogamer]
“Simply put, you can organise the goods in the warehouse in any way you please. You can arrange them by colour. You can stack them depending on the order they first came in. If you want, you can leave stuff how it arrived, in big jumbled palette-loads and just dip in and out picking what you want when the orders come through. It's all up to you. And for some reason this completely blew my mind. I think it's because puzzle games are so prescriptive. Do this to get points, avoid that to stay alive. This goes here, that goes there, onwards and upwards, faster and faster. Wilmot has a bit of that, but it also wants you to do your own thinking about such a crucial aspect of the game - how the goods you handle are arranged. There is a freedom and self-expression here that goes beyond the self-expression I find in something like Lumines or Tetris. I get to choose where to put the blocks in these games, sure, but where I put them is something the game judges explicitly by marking how many lines I clear or how many squares the timeline sweeps up. In Wilmot, as long as I can find the goods that are ordered in a timely fashion, the game doesn't care how I've arranged them. It isn't tracking them.”
posted by Fizz (21 comments total) 28 users marked this as a favorite
Twist ending: You're controlling a Kiva robot in a real Amazon warehouse.
posted by temancl at 9:44 PM on October 5, 2019 [41 favorites]

I think that the mechanic of weird categorical decision making like "do I put the 8-spoked wheel with the wheels or with the religious iconography" is really cool and thoughtful, and makes your brain spark in interesting ways. Some of the actual stacking and moving gets a little onerous near the end. I think I'm at about the 3/4 point?

Would be interesting to try in co-op mode where the categorization then becomes a discussion, and the pacing gets more hectic.
posted by JauntyFedora at 1:07 AM on October 6, 2019 [2 favorites]

ohhhhh this is like…my delightmare
posted by lokta at 1:14 AM on October 6, 2019 [26 favorites]

My husband doesn't like doing jigsaws with me because I like to sort all the pieces into piles by colour. This looks very much up my alley.
posted by stillnocturnal at 2:00 AM on October 6, 2019 [3 favorites]

There's part of me that wants to get this and another part of me that is stressed just from watching the trailer.
posted by hoyland at 5:58 AM on October 6, 2019 [14 favorites]

This is literally a fever dream I have had: pushing boxes.
posted by grumpybear69 at 6:05 AM on October 6, 2019 [1 favorite]

Looks fun, but I think the time aspect would break me. Meanwhile, is the VO on the trailer Ann Reardon?
posted by Mchelly at 6:28 AM on October 6, 2019

Looks fun, but I think the time aspect would break me. Meanwhile, is the VO on the trailer Ann Reardon?

It's Philippa Warr.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 7:09 AM on October 6, 2019 [2 favorites]

I bought this for my partner, who despite not being a gamer is very very good at a small handful of "casual" games; Minesweeper, Chuzzle, Bejeweled, that kind of thing. Hundreds of hours of play and he's very fast and very good at them. This game seems right up his alley.

Except for the controls. It uses WASD (or arrows) to move. That seems perfectly ordinary to me but it turns out he's never had to do that before and it seems like a serious obstacle. It's a small weird complaint but I wish they had a mouse-only option. It might be tricky because pathing is so important.

Playing this with him made me think back to Sokoban, the classic warehouse / movement puzzle game. Is there One True Sokoban that's been very well made? I found a bunch of crappy freemium versions for PC and web browsers. None of them had a reasonable mouse-only mode.
posted by Nelson at 7:59 AM on October 6, 2019

Will it work with a gamepad? (If you have any console controllers around, many of them can double as PC gamepagds via USB or Bluetooth.)
posted by mbrubeck at 8:49 AM on October 6, 2019

Oh wow it's available on Nintendo Switch
posted by mbrubeck at 8:52 AM on October 6, 2019

It's so good and I stopped about halfway through the other week because I feel like I'm not in the headspace to organize my good good warehouse with the attention and efficiency it deserves. It's a remarkably effective use of some very simple mechanics, I really like this warehouse.
posted by cortex at 9:54 AM on October 6, 2019 [2 favorites]

Uh, no thanks...
posted by jim in austin at 10:16 AM on October 6, 2019 [2 favorites]

Looks like a good game to help with developing short term memory!
posted by asok at 10:36 AM on October 6, 2019 [1 favorite]

Wasn't this a Doctor Who episode?
posted by SPrintF at 11:12 AM on October 6, 2019 [2 favorites]

Oh god, between this and the fucking goose I might end up buying a Switch.

I don't really want to invite videogames into my life, but I'm being tempted awfully mightily.
posted by hippybear at 1:11 PM on October 6, 2019 [3 favorites]

This is dark but I kind of want a version where I can force a bunch of minimum wage workers to sort the stuff faster and faster and fire them when they get a sore leg and make them clock out to pee and turn the warehouse temperature way up.

*takes off mask, revealing Jeff Bezos*
posted by freecellwizard at 3:17 PM on October 6, 2019 [3 favorites]

I really like games like this and Viscera Cleanup Detail, but playing them makes me feel bad for not cleaning the actual apartment I live in.
posted by rifflesby at 7:51 PM on October 6, 2019 [1 favorite]

I should get back to this. I’ve gotten close to the end of the game and just moved on to other distractions. My warehouse has been organized in a way I feel is pretty efficient, I’ve gotten to a point where I just separate out the new load of stuff from the truck at the beginning of a delivery day so I can quickly grab the new items, and put a few things away, but mostly I leave that for the untimed warehouse reorganization rounds.

Mostly it just feels like there’s achievement hunting: see all however many objects over the course of multiple games, put together undocumented combinations of objects (“four things related to space”, that sort of thing). Fun while it lasted and it definitely tickled some interesting parts of my brain.
posted by egypturnash at 8:09 PM on October 6, 2019

This was a super charming trailer that makes me want to try the game despite hating organization.
posted by GoblinHoney at 9:02 AM on October 7, 2019

Twist ending: You're controlling a Kiva robot in a real Amazon warehouse.

[flashback to the first meeting of the game designers...]
What if we made something like Ender's Game, only without the revenge fantasy, and with the dystopia turned up to 11?
posted by solotoro at 10:10 AM on October 7, 2019

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