Reviewed on PS4
Ever looked at Goat Simulator and thought, “Man, this would’ve been a whole lot better if they’d just let us be a goose instead of a goat!”. Well, then we’ve got good news for you, the people at House House have brought that thought to life in their own charmingly stylish rendition: Untitled Goose Game.
The gameplay is fairly straightforward, you can do anything that a goose can do in real life, and also a few supergoose things it can’t like dragging a whole-sized pumpkin across a farmer’s field. The gameplay lacks a lot of depth but that’s fairly understandable considering gooses can’t do a whole lot anyways.
The controls, although simple, are quite responsive and as authentically true-to-life as goosely possible. There isn’t much in terms of a story, so no this unfortunately isn’t a revenge tale of a goose seeking vengeance on the humans that made his brother a roast last Christmas, you’re instead just a regular goose who’s just hell-bent on ruining the day of the residents of a quaint English village for no apparent reason— it’s as simple as that.
You get a notebook full of hilariously menacing tasks for each of the game’s four locations and a couple of hidden objectives that are unlocked after the credits roll, but can also be completed in your first playthrough if you manage to figure out what they are.
There are also some stealth mechanics in the game, and while we weren’t expecting them to play out as splendidly as a Metal Gear Solid game, they were way too poorly realized and stick out. The smart AI remains vigilant throughout the game, and they get more aggressive as each level progresses. However, even if you mess up there aren’t any consequences for our fine feathered friend hence the game lacks any sort of actual challenge.
You can also play the game with a friend over local multi-player. This mode sees two geese wreak havoc in this village. The only downside is that it makes an already unchallenging game even easier. However, it can still be loads fun if you aren’t trying to play the game to complete the objectives, but rather just want to ruin the day of a couple of villagers.
In contrary to Goat Simulator’surban setting and realistic graphics, we get here a very soft and elegant art-style akin to a good children’s cartoon. This works really well for it and translates nicely to the quirky antics going on the screen. This unique art style adds to the flair and gives it a unique visual identity, making it instantly recognizable to anyone who’s heard of it.
The whole experience is pretty seamless from start to finish and we didn’t experience any stutters or dips in frame rate even once. There are also no loading screens at all after starting up the game. The developers have nailed the look and atmosphere of a typical English village surprisingly well considering that they’re in the other side of the globe, Australia.
Audio & Music
The score is simply splendid and especially commendable despite it not being present during majority of the game. The simply classic and timeless piano plays dynamically representing the action on the screen by perfectly fading in and out at intense moments.
There isn’t any real dialogue, which could’ve helped humanize the AI characters. Instead you rely on the pictorial thought bubbles that appear on top of their heads to figure out their next move. Apart from this the audio is simply excellent and they’ve nailed the sound of the goose’s webbed feet against the ground and absolutely perfected the honk.
Untitled Goose Game takes you on a whimsical adventure that will have you grinning from the beginning to the end and has a unique premise unlike any other game. Unfortunately, the journey is short-lived and last only about three hours including all the post-game content. Although the game delivers for this short period of time, it ultimately feels like a demo instead of a fully-fledged game.
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