A year or so ago, I came across a video of a computer game. It was a game that grabbed my attention by the shoulders, shook it violently, slapped it across the face a couple of times, and said, “Get this. Now.” So I surfed around, found the site for the game, watched the video again, and was desolate to find that the game wasn’t actually available yet. So I downloaded the simple version that was offered, described by the author as “just a quick and ugly prototype of that game.”
Imagine my surprise and delight when I found that the “quick and ugly prototype” was actually a deceptively simple, endlessly fascinating, and quite beautiful rendition of what would eventually become a fantastic game and a wonderful learning device.
First, here’s the video:
Simple, basic, elegant. The version shown in the video is now available in beta, but it carries a $19.95 price tag. For a geek like me, there wasn’t even a debate. I rationalized it as my Christmas present to myself. And I have been enjoying it for the last couple of days, rationing the amount of game play so that it’ll last for a while before I finish all the levels. Did I mention that it’s only a beta version?
If $19.99 is a bit steep for a geeky game, I strongly urge you to download that original “ugly prototype” and try playing through its five levels. You can download it here for free, and after you’ve mastered that and are hungry for more (and you will be!), you can sign up and buy the beta here. For anyone remotely interested in computer games, graphics, physics, or just spending some fun time on the computer, these games are a must-have. Kudos to Petri Purho for designing such a compelling diversion!