Indie Game Review
Developer Weston Bell-Geddes created the peculiar new game titled “Left on Read”.
Using the ongoing pandemic as a jumping-off point, Left on Read attempts to show us the effect the pandemic has had on relationships, texting as a medium & of course, being left on read. Be warned, my gameplay pictures include some spoilers. I don’t want to give away too much of the story if you’d like to learn more, download it, it’s free! (Link Below)
“It’s March of 2020; you were just sent home from college because of the coronavirus, you have a few small regrets, mainly not telling someone how you really feel.”
What it means, to be “Left on Read”.
It’s happened to everyone at some point, you’re texting someone & boom!
A digital wall, “Read”, & they’re gone.
This game takes a fun approach to that, where you have to carefully balance what you say in order to keep the flow of the conversation going. Every time I made a choice of what to say, I had that teetering feeling in my stomach of whether it was the right choice or not. Keep the conversation flowing well enough & by the end, you’ll be golden.
The mechanics of this game are refreshing, it’s a simplified platformer with A & D to move left & right, along with Space to jump. The unique approach taken is the platforms themselves, being reminiscent of the Apple iMessage system. You jump from text to text, while making your choices of how to proceed. Don’t worry about falling off, this game is quite forgiving with that.
The story follows a college student who never got the chance to tell a classmate how he actually feels about her, & this becomes evident in a few ways. One of the best parts of this game is how they used the time between typing and sending a message. Sometimes, our character would type something out, only to backtrack & remove what he really wanted to say to her. Other times, he’s losing his damn mind.
On a side note, I’d like to talk about the audio. The gameplay music has an eerie tone to it, it made me anxious every time I made a choice. That’s a good thing! The eerie vibe given off by the background audio seemed to be right at home in this game. The typing sounds, upload & download message tones all seemed to fit well & never seemed out of place.
I completed the game & got to the realistic mode. I wouldn’t say there’s anything wrong with the game, after all, it’s free. What I would love to see from the developers is a long-story version of this platformer system they have in a full paid game in the future. There is great potential here! It doesn’t have to stay to relationships, they can branch this off to horror, drama, etc. Oh! & more choice options, please. Other than that, I say this was a fun way to kill some time & I highly recommend you try it for yourself.