The UnderGarden is about exploration. It’s part game and part experience, with a little bit of puzzle solving mixed in. The game takes place across different worlds of windy tunnels, dark places filled with fog, and areas where electricity turns large rock gears endlessly. As the player, you float through these dark caverns, and fill them with color and music. You’ll need to collect pollen to grow beautiful flowers and exotic plants. Some of these plants bear fruit, used to manipulate doors, levers, gears, and other contraptions you find along the way. There are also special items to collect, and new flora and fruit to discover, and as they bloom the lighting and animations make the entire environment spring to life. Music also plays a huge part in the game, and almost everything you touch makes different musical tones. As you fill the world with music, you’ll run into the musicians, who play different instruments and will keep you company on your journey.
The game supports drop-in/drop-out co-op play, so a second player can join in and play along for the whole game, or just a level or two. We wanted to make it fun for two people to play together, even if they aren’t both at the same skill level. In co-op, the second player is there to help the first gather pollen and solve puzzles. So you don’t have to worry about getting lost or left behind: they always get pulled along and you’ll always be close together. The second player can even just float around making everything colourful and musical while the first player does the heavy lifting: it’s up to you. We think it is a great way to get a friend or significant other into the game, especially if they don’t usually play games.
Many games are really fast-paced and full of tension. The UnderGarden is pretty much the polar opposite of that. It is about creating rather than destroying: you can’t die, you can’t really fail, and you play at your own pace. In the right state of mind, it is a nice relaxing experience. You can pour yourself a beverage, shut off the lights, and just float around the world. If you are a fan of games like Flower, or flOw, then you’ll be right at home here. Even if you spend more time playing shooters, The UnderGarden is a great change of pace to help you unwind afterwards.
So who are you and why are you here? Your name’s Ludwig and you’ve been described as everything from a floating baby to a space monkey. But who you really are, and what this place is, are things you’ll have to figure out on your own, so you’ll have to use your imagination there!
The UnderGarden is now available for the suggested retail price of $9.99.
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