There’s been a lot of excitement lately over PSN indie hit Journey. The developers, Thatgamecompany, are renowned for whimsical art-y games and their first effort, Cloud, certainly deserves attention.
Cloud places you in the role of a nameless, bedridden little boy who spends his time daydreaming of flying high up in the sky. The entire game takes place inside his imagination and focuses upon manipulating the clouds. The boy can gather clouds, absorb them, stack them and rearrange them into elaborate shapes and patterns.
Not all the clouds in the game’s world will bend to your whim immediately. Some need to “converted”, and this is accomplished by letting them touch clouds already under your control. Smog clouds cannot be converted and must be eliminated by crashing them into bright clouds, resulting in pretty rainstorms.
It’s impossible to die in the game, but various levels have objectives, be it forming clouds into specific shapes, using rainstorms to extinguish runaway fires on islands, clearing smog or converting all the clouds. The overall atmosphere is extremely tranquil and Cloud is quite possibly one of the few games that is almost entirely devoid of any stress or frustration. It’s all wrapped up in bright colours and mellow music, although one cannot escape the feeling of melancholy bubbling just below the game’s surface, however subtle it may be.
The game is sadly a bit too short and could definitely do with more missions. Nonetheless, if you’re looking for a different gaming experience with nary a shred of frustration to be found, give Cloud a try.
Get it here (for Windows only).