Review: A Mortician’s Tale | A Little Journey into Death Positivity

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TITLE: A Mortician’s Tale
DEVELOPER: Laundry Bear Games
PUBLISHER: Laundry Bear Games
SERIES: N/A
RELEASED: October 2017
GENRE: Casual Indie
CONSOLE: PC (Steam)

KEY INFO: Casual games, single-player, narrative-driven, art aesthetics, short games, emotional, educational
CONTENT WARNINGS: Death, Dead Bodies, Grieving Families
Note: This review does not contain any images of dead bodies but does discuss the act of preparing dead bodies (though does not go into any detail about this)

Synopsis: A Mortician’s Tale is a narrative-driven death positive video game where you play as a mortician tasked with running a funeral home—preparing the bodies of the deceased (via embalming or cremation), attending their funerals and listening to their loved ones’ stories, and running the business.

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A Mortician’s Tale was everything that I wanted it to be; an aesthetically pleasing little game that was empowering yet sensitive towards death yet also pleasantly surprising with its diverse characters. Possibly one of the only drawbacks of the game is that is disappointingly short, taking only 0.9 hours to completely even when going through the game slowly, and this is one of the only reasons I couldn’t quite give it 5 stars. Overall though, A Mortician’s Tale is a brilliant little game that I would highly recommend to anyone interested in the funeral industry, death practices, and narrative-driven games. 

 

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Review: Old Man’s Journey | A Bittersweet Symphony

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TITLE: Old Man’s Journey
DEVELOPER: Broken Rules
PUBLISHER: Broken Rules
SERIES: N/A
RELEASED: May 2017
GENRE: Indie Puzzle
CONSOLE: PC (Steam)

KEY INFO: Casual games, single player, ‘puzzle adventure’, visual narrative, art aesthetics, short games, emotional

Synopsis: Old Man’s Journey, a soul-searching puzzle adventure, tells a story of life, loss, reconciliation, and hope. Entrenched in a beautifully sunkissed and handcrafted world, embark on a heartfelt journey interwoven with lighthearted and pressure-free puzzle solving.

A visual narrative about life’s precious moments, broken dreams, and changed plans, uncover stories of the old man’s life told through beautiful vignettes of his memories. Interacting with the serene and whimsical environment, solve playful puzzles by shaping the landscape, growing the hills to create the old man’s path forward.

During this compact gameplay experience, you’ll be transported to a vibrant and wishful world, exploring life’s complexities through the old man’s eyes. Meditatively delightful and reflective, Old Man’s Journey invites you to immerse yourself in quiet and inquisitive puzzles, and experience the old man’s heartache, regret, and hope.

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Old Man’s Journey is without a doubt one of the most beautifully cozy games that I have played, producing an immersive gaming experience which was relaxing and enchanting. It is a short game which can be played through in one sitting, taking me only 1.5 hours to complete, but was entirely satisfying. There is so much to love about Old Man’s Journey and I came incredibly close to giving it 5 stars yet there was something about the storyline that struck a wrong chord with me and resulted in me downgrading the overall rating to 3 stars.

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