Meta Form is a text based uh… adventure game? No, uhhh, it’s a text based game, I’ll just leave it there cause my head hurts trying to classify much about anything that comes to this game. So everyone you get to see Aki look like a moron again WOOT! In this you play as, I guess you. It’s all about just interacting with things, and people-like things. Yeah I’m going down the rabbit hole of dumb right now I know, bear with my inelegant vernacular. Games like this always hurt my confidence, I’m not good at categorizing the stuff I see in games like this to have words to explain it. So I’ll focus first on the gameplay aspect because that’s a hell of a lot easier to explain.
Okay this game is, as stated, a text based game, but it’s not one of your old text based games where you have to type shit, no, no, no, this one let’s things talk to you, and occasionally you obtain a word. This obtained word gets added to your list of collected words, sometimes these words are area specific as well and you can’t take them with you. You can combine two words to interact with the world, and to compound on that, because things must be more confusing, the order of the words matter as well. So for instance, you start off with three words, two are place specific and one you keep with you. Those words are Eyeball, Place, and Exit. You can use two of these words at any given time. So let’s go with Eyeball and Place, you look around at the place, Eyeball and Exit, you look at the exit. But when you use Exit and Eyeball the game tells you that you can’t just throw your eyeball out of the exit or something along those lines. To leave, you end up needing to use Exit and Place to… “exit” the “place”. I know it’s really hard right? You get a handful of words you keep with you as you continue your journey, with each place you enter having a few words that stay there. These places aren’t normal, like you meat someone who is covered in vines, someone with giant legs that’s making clones of themselves, a talking rock, yes that’s right a TALKING ROCK, a talking nest, yes it gets fucking weird.
The game took me like an hour to beat, I have no idea if I did everything and saw everything possible before I ended the game, but you can collect totems throughout the game, no idea what they’re for or how many there are, but you can collect them. I ended up with nine totems when I decided to finish the game because I couldn’t think of anything I had missed, I’m bitchin’ like that, I know. The game deals with lots of emotions, but seems to mostly deal with not wanting to go out and interact with the world, something I understand very well since I’m agoraphobic due to social anxiety. However, you’re pulled out into the world, well at least facets of it anyways. As you go through you interact with people, just doing your best until you decide to finish the game and you have to deal with one last major hurdle that I won’t explain but dealing with it made me feel bad, even a little sad, and I’m not entirely sure why honestly. So yeah, just yeah. I don’t really know what else to say about it because again, I’m horrible with words when it comes to games that deal with more abstract stuff like this cause I’m a derp *shrugs* as is life.
Overall, I think it’s a quick and fairly simple game to finish, and I feel it’s weird enough that you can at least try it. If you try it hopefully the good writing and mindfuckery keeps you attuned to it enough to keep with it til the end if the sheer shortness doesn’t do that on it’s own anyways. I enjoyed it, though trying to talk about it makes me feel like my brain is melting into fucking goo. The art style looks all hand drawn and I’m all sorts of for that, and there was some comedy in it that I really appreciated, the one I remember the best was when you used the word Scale with Eyeball and it said something like ‘You’re trying to scale your eye but it’s on your face, I guess this is the new term for pulling yourself up by your bootstraps” or something like that, and it provoked a chuckle. Simple girl, simple pleasures, and I’m pretty sure you all know I’m pretty fucking simple by now.
A review copy of the game was provided by one of the devs Casey “Boz” Weeks.
darkmikasonfire awards Meta Form the Indie Gamer Team Seal of Approval.