Unpacking is a light puzzle game of block-fitting elements that tells of the life of the individual whose items you’re unpacking. As you go through their life over the years, you go through their hardships, their milestones and everything in between.
Akin to what Bioshock did in terms of story telling with audio logs back then by giving life to Rapture as a world that has lived and gone as it lay desolate in its current state, Unpacking does this without spoken words but rather with the items that you unpack.
As you unpack, the more of the unnamed character’s life is revealed, their character, their quirks, their hobbies, their goals, their predicament. Every stage reveals layers of their personality and makes it feel so personal that will leave you reflecting on yourself. The level of one’s personal feelings can vary and it can amplify it further if you lived during similar periods as the character.
Troll & (Wi)i
It starts off with you unpacking a room and slowly progresses to more sections of the different houses the character you’re unpacking lives in at different periods of their life. From unpacking Dam Troll to CRT monitor to Wii and more, in every stage you will be unpacking items that fit the timeline well. Each item that you unpack will have a number of unspecified areas which you can put them in, you can hang clothes, fold them into a pile, stack books or place them upright against a leaning surface. There’s multiple ways to store and place items where they belong so the flexibility is very welcoming.
As you complete the levels, you’ll unlock stickers which you can collect and use to take a photo of the rooms, with filters and frames also available to be added. There’s some hidden achievements and tasks you can do to unlock more stickers, some are along the lines of common sense or human nature for you to do whereas others are more obscure.
Another “add-on” that is present once you’re done with the level is the ability to watch your replay of the whole level or saving and viewing a gif of each room you did, which is a nice touch by the developers.
From unpacking a simple drawing on a paper to a table top Easel stand and a drawing tablet, from boombox to headphones, iPods. From Tamagotchi to a Wii console, a London bus souvenir to souvenirs of Eiffel Tower, Windmills of Kinderdijk. This shows the subtle progression in the character’s interest, hobby and goals.
Besides being a really intuitive and good light puzzle game, Unpacking shines at telling a story with its collection of items that you unpack. You can’t help but try to figure out what the character is going through, what they went through based on previous levels. To me that in of itself is story-telling in its finest form, providing hints and leaving the player to wander and paint a picture of their own.
From an empty space, a room, a house that’s lifeless and with no identity but you will always end up in a home that is lived, has a meaningful experiences to tell and and one that will stay with you forever, just like the Pig Plushie.
Hailing from a small Island. Huge football fan. Drinks too much tea.
Survival, Roguelikes, Turn-based or Indie games in general are my go to genres but I like to dabble in all kinds of genres. I tend to have a soft spot for Shmups and Hidden Object Games once in a while.