Just released this week, here we have an inventive platformer and puzzler. Ohio, USA’s Skookum Arts spent six years crafting it. And the thing is good old fun.
Righto, the game is a rather visually driven experience. Although a standard platformer of sorts, as the player there are many visual treats in store.
But Skookum Arts also makes sure there’s a keen gameplay element here.
And that plays out with the many clever puzzles it creates around its high concept idea. Plus, nice noir jazz moody soundtrack, eh?
What happens is this—you’re a pedestrian within a world of public sign systems. And you have to use a node-based system to connect and rearrange the signs.
From what we can tell, this project is from a four individual team. And that’s not at all uncommon these days. Plenty of indie games are from one-person teams, in fact.
We mention that as The Pedestrian has the professional, slick quality of a full-blown AAA project. It’s all rather impressive.
Much of the experience is a visual one—the 2.5D style reminiscent of indie masterpiece INSIDE.
And as your actions drive each new scene forward, you watch on and see it all unfold and marvel at how creative the team is.
You’re sort of responsible for building the levels your character will traverse. Like Super Mario Maker—but with road signs and jazz.
The puzzles are quite intensive. Trial and error is typically the way forward, as you shift road signs around, and then hurtle on your way again.
That does mean you’re occasionally frustrated by the slow pace. You just want to get on with things, complete a puzzle, dash on, then get stuck on the next one.
It reminds us of Unravel Two in that respect—charming but a bit abrupt at times. We mention this as The Pedestrian, as with Unravel, will draw many gamers in due to its unique looks. But the gameplay experience isn’t for everyone.
Upon playing the game through again (and it’s only around four or five hours long), having memorised most of the puzzles we enjoyed the flow a lot more.
But a lot of love has gone into the game. It’s not a haphazard mishmash of things. And to help ease any issues is a rather lush, jazzy soundtrack from Logan Hayes.
It’s a grand start to the 2020 indie scene if something like this can launch. It’s creative, often inspired, and very engaging.
Right now it’s only available on Steam, but we can expect ports to the modern video game consoles. Hopefully. As it’ll work a treat on the likes of the Switch.
Looking for something to remind you how inspired the video game industry can be? The Pedestrian is right here and ready to cross the road.