Aug 21, 2014
I’m an emotional mess, and it’s all because of Unpossible.
On paper, it’s a racing game, but it goes a bit beyond the basic paradigm. It starts from the intro screen, with the dazzling blue interspersed with dark undertones. The background cityscape is bathed in moonlight, and the electric feel is almost tangible in the way it invokes the night. The raceway is a blue-lined dark, tubular affair that extends in seemingly unending fashion over barren land.
Starting the game hints at the play style; it’s possible to control the motion by tilting or touch controls. The view is first person, and we have no idea of what is being raced, and frankly, it doesn’t really matter in this action affair. As soon as a run is started, the hosting device “becomes” the screen, and the device starts down the raceway at high speed. Now, it’s silly to expect no obstacles, and this is far from a silly game; different pieces appear in the path, and it is necessary to guide oneself around the lane to avoid them, as hitting one of them ends the run.
The measuring stick is the time one remains alive; easier said than done though, because this is where the delightful insanity of the gameplay becomes apparent. The longer one survives, the more frenetic the pace becomes. The developer uses simple but logical tools to force players to test reflexes. For instance, when the raceway arcs, one has a tougher time seeing ahead, and quicker moves are necessary to stay alive. There are different levels, but to unlock them, there are thresholds; for instance, the first level, Simplicity, is the default, unless one can make it 60 seconds to unlock the next level, and so on.
The latent strength of the game is its ability to draw out such a range of emotions: rage, joy, peace, disappointment… all wrapped up in addiction. It’s that good.
Someday, we’ll find out games like this are bad for us. I mean, who needs this type of crazy jolt on a daily basis? Till then, strap yourself in. It’s a crazy ride.