This game is expected to be rated PEGI 16
Our review includes potentially triggering words:
Anxiety, Depression and Horror.
Ignore All Content Warnings
Posted: 14 months ago, last updated 7 months ago.
You are introduced to your buddy (called Buddy) at the start of the game. You initially play several old fashioned games with them, such as hangman and guess the number. After quickly tiring of these, the Buddy character creates a set of new games for you to play. It's here that you uncover strange anomalies, from creepy, out of character dialogue to sudden, loud glitches that show strange scenes.
As you progress, these anomalies get more frequent and intense, and Buddy seems more and more desperate to please you and keep you playing, and also seems to want you to choose certain activities and options. Finally, when the whole thing seems on the brink of collapse, you confront Buddy and decide whether your friendship will survive or whether the damage has already been done.
In the first few sections, you type responses and commands, and although you can type anything the game only recognises certain responses. Soon after the introductory phase, the gameplay shifts to resemble early 2D, then 3D, RPGs where you move about the world and occasionally fight enemies in a combat system that relies on precise timing of random keys that briefly flash across the screen.
It's a novel game with a unique way of telling a thematically rich story that, when combined with its blend of genres, make it a compelling choice for both novice and experienced players.
You can play this game in the following styles:
On the game's steam page, the developer says: "This game contains themes of emotional manipulation as well as themes of depression and anxiety, and as a result, may not be suitable for all audiences."
15+ year-olds usually have the required skill to enjoy this game. Still, it's important for parents and guardians to consider the maturity required to process the game content. As well as dealing with some complex themes, the gameplay sometimes requires some intuition from the player that may make it inaccessible for younger or less experienced players.
When first opening the game, you need to "boot up" the buddy simulator from inside the faux operating system. This requires at least a bit of prior knowledge about how to do such things, or the willingness to look up a tutorial.
As a large portion of the game is told through (non-adjustable) text, you'll need to be prepared to do a large amount of reading. The text is often quite small, and if you are making choices that your buddy doesn't like the text may become unreadable In some sections, the colour of the text changes, depending on your favourite colour, which is previously inputted, but generally the text is a high-contrast white on black.
For some of the combat sections in the game, you'll need to be able to quickly respond to in screen cues indicating specific buttons to press. However, there is a mode called "One Key Mode" which disables the random key element of this.
The game is mostly black and white or monochrome, which makes it easy to distinguish between different elements. For effect, dramatic or otherwise, this is sometimes not the case, but the game remains overall high-contrast throughout.
Diversity and Inclusion
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