Apr 29, 2014
Some games ask important questions, as old as humanity itself. What is power? Is there really a free will? Will we ever be advanced enough to go to other planets? Other games ask simpler ones, like what if you were a superhero? Could you defeat a dragon? Does the damn princess even exist? And finally, there are games like Beach God that ask another kind of questions altogether. What if you would disintegrate into a pile of bones every time a woman on the beach thought badly of your upper arm muscle mass? Truly, gaming is a revolutionary medium.
Victor Hugo wrote: â€œthe greatest happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved; loved for ourselves, or rather, loved in spite of ourselvesâ€. This inner struggle is perfectly envisioned in the unanimous person in Beach God, whose very existence depends on his acceptance by women, who go past him on a metaphoric beach. The women are obviously symbolic, as they all look perfectly identical. They represent the unreachable beauty that the man strives for, ever so conscious about his own appearance. Although the player may woe an untold number of women with his flexing, his record crumbles to dust as soon as he allows even one of them go past him in disgust. There is a line in the sand before the hero, and if his flexing fails to impress a woman on her way past, he unleashes a violent cry of despair, falling apart.
But maybe the answer is to just â€œflexâ€ through life, without thinking of your own well-being? Beach God has an answer to this question, as there is a â€œstrengthâ€ meter on the top of the screen. When the man flexes, it starts disappearing. If he doesn’t take short breaks for the meter to refill, and it reaches zero, he will suffer the same boney fate. Just like in real life, if we don’t stop and take a break, our self will be stripped away, leaving only an empty husk.
And that’s everything there is to Beach God. There’s nothing to unlock, no different levels or modes. Just non-stop search for balance between flexing every time a woman crosses the line in front of the main character, and letting the â€œstrengthâ€ indicator restore, all to reach a higher score before inevitably dying in front of several purple octopuses. If this isn’t a perfect metaphor for living, I don’t know what is.