Unpacking is a little gem I’ve had my eye on for a while, and with a recent trailer, it looks like the game is nearing completion for release in 2021.
From Witch Beam Games, this indie game is all about unpacking boxes in a new home, a zen-game, a game that tells stories through showing you the different elements of an absent character’s life, and a game that quietly pushes you towards solving puzzles.
The art style is exquisite. There is something sort of nostalgic about the pixel-perfect placement of the design, the sharpness of the edges, and the pastel color schemes.
Even in this short trailer, you can see the intricate design of the various items around the room. It’s nothing short of relaxing watching each item find its appropriate placement in the room.
Unpacking‘s sound design is also on-point. The soundtrack is already something on my wishlist (composed by Jeff van Dyck), and the satisfying popping sounds as the boxes disappear into thin air is quite mesmerizing.
It’s certainly a unique game. Labeled as a zen-game this is a title for relaxation and subtle puzzle-solving. You can see in the trailer that one or two items are highlighted, suggesting that there are certain places where certain items must go.
That puzzle system doesn’t look like it’ll dictate how you want to decorate a room, but it does offer a smaller challenge to keep the game compelling level after level.
You follow a character through their life across 8 different houses move, each move with a selection of rooms to unpack and complete. As the game develops you will learn more about this absent character, and a feeling of connectedness with this person you’ve never met begins to form.
This is the way it tells its quiet story, an unassuming story, but one that will likely settle in your brain long after the game is finished.
Witch Beam is a studio most known for the twin-stick arcade game Assault Android Cactus which released way back in 2015. While Unpacking is leaps and bounds away from Cactus, it definitely looks like another promising game that might become another classic in its own right.