This was the first video game I finished in 2020 because it was only ten minutes long! More people make ten minute games please.
If you played Baba is You, this is like that but without the programming languages rearing their indecipherable heads. Developer Jon Topielski sticks you in a big Sokoban grid and has you maneuver yourself to the exit while both utilizing and avoiding the obstacles along the way. It’s certainly not as unique a concept as Baba, but if we’re grading on that curve our expectations might need some readjusting. No, this time instead of moving the literal, tangible phrase BLOCK = BAD around a maze in some interesting way, we’re simply heaving that bad block out of the way ourselves.
The Baba is You influence is readily apparent, but the What the Golf? nod had me intrigued. Turns out, yeah there’s a bit of that DNA here as well! If this were ever to be fleshed out into something larger, the silly surprises of What the Golf? would add a lot of identity to an otherwise pretty simple Sokoban riff. Just in the first handful of levels (I think there’s only six or seven total), the silly surprise of taking control of a random stage object instead of the main character still hasn’t lost the charm since What the Golf perfected the concept last year.
The visuals are just enough not-Baba to get the job done. The elevator / carnival-lite music is also pretty chill while not doing anything to stand out. For what it’s worth, the one looping track works just fine as background music to walk around the house and eventually write this post to. The central concept is good and the ancillary stuff just works! I hope we get to see Topielski experiment further with blending puzzle genres, because after my ten minutes was up I was ready for more. Also, adding a dash of What the Golf’s manic brilliance into every genre should be industry standard going forward.
Go enjoy your ten minutes of puzzling on the game’s itch.io page!