home

arrow pointing left
arrow pointing right

This Is Just A Normal, Run-Of-The-Mill Walking Simulator And Everything Is Fine, Don’t Worry About It

A colorful illustrated outdoor space full of orange cardboard-cutout-like people, staring at you. A colorful illustrated outdoor space full of orange cardboard-cutout-like people, staring at you. There is water up to their waists. A colorful illustrated outdoor space full of orange cardboard-cutout-like people, staring at you. There is water up to their chests. Illustrated trees from the scene in the previous photos. Some of the figures from the scene in the previous photos. Two orange speech bubbles reading YOU KNOW THE PAPER IS DUE TOMORROW RIGHT? and WHY HAVEN'T YOU CALLED ME? I THOUGHT WE WERE FRIENDS...

Background

In Object-Oriented Programming for Artists, often abbreviated to just "Experimental Games," students made one game a week for five weeks, and then spent the final three weeks of the quarter working on one final, more polished piece. For my final game, I took the Fall Out Boy/Panic! At The Disco approach to naming and called it "This Is Just A Normal, Run-Of-The-Mill Walking Simulator And Everything Is Fine, Don’t Worry About It." You can click here to play it for free.

What is it?

As you play the game, water is inexplicably rising around you. You can explore the space you're in, try to talk to the people around you, or just watch. Bumping into the figures populating the space brings up speech bubbles through which they ask banal questions, make everyday demands of you, or, occasionally, ask you things like, "Are you a good person?" and "Is this really your best work?" The space also features a handful of benches. When you touch a bench, it offers a different message than the people around you. As you navigate the space in whatever way feels best to you, you hear ambient outdoor noise. None of the figures around you seem to be concerned with the rising water. Once the water reaches just around neck-height, the game ends. It takes about 10 minutes to play through. While the game feels like depression to me, it seems to mean something different to every player, many of them referencing anxiety and deadlines. Whatever it means to you, and no matter how much it differs from my feelings, to me, it's a valid interpretation. Different things feel different to different people.