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  • Chad Myers

Game Review #244: Old Man’s Journey (Nintendo Switch)

Updated: Oct 8, 2019

Reviewer: Chad M.

Developer: Broken Rules

Publisher: Broken Rules

Category: Puzzle

Release Date: 2.20.2018

Price (at time of review): $9.99 (digital) | $34.00 (physical)

Buy Old Man’s Journey from the eShop here.

Buy Old Man's Journey (physically) from RED ART GAMES here.

Old Man Making The Move

We see games make the move from mobile to console quite often, and I figured with the Switch having a touch screen when in mobile mode that they wouldn’t be slowing down. Old Man’s Journey was originally a mobile game that was developed by Broken Rules, but it has now made its way to the Nintendo Switch. Most of the mobile games I’ve played that have been ported over have been pretty solid, and as this is now getting a limited physical release, I thought there could be no better time to take a look at this one to see if it’s worth the grab.

Old Man Goes UP & Out...

This is a very short game. I beat the whole game in an hour and a half straight through. The story starts off with an old man standing at his home, looking out at the sea. The mail carrier comes, delivering a letter that has the old man pack a bag and immediately leave on a journey. As you travel you will be feed the story bit by bit through flashbacks. This was giving me major vibes from the Pixar movie, Up, where they show the old man’s entire love story through a beautiful flashback, using no words, only the visual story through flashbacks.

Now, as this is so short and the story is a major selling point, I won’t go into the details. What I will say is that it left me thinking long after I’d turned off my Switch. It’s a story of love and regret, and it will definitely have you looking through this old man’s eyes at your own life. I couldn’t relate to the old man, as I wouldn’t have made the same decisions he did, but that’s what makes this story so strong, highly relatable, and very emotional.

Move It Move It to Get Through It

The old man starts off on his journey—a long one—that will have him going through many different locales. Quite often, the old man will get tired and sit down to take a load off. You can move the cursor around to interact with things that will either start a flashback, or make the old man get up and keep going. From there, the only gameplay is small bits of puzzle throughout, where you move pieces of land up or down to allow the old man to get where he’s going. There is even a part where you’re on a train, and you align the tracks up or down to keep the old man moving along.

There are several times you’ll have to do slightly more than simply move the land. You have to manipulate objects in the environment to break down a wall, for example, but that’s the extent of the gameplay; and it’s ok, as this wasn’t meant to be super deep. The story and how it hit you personally is the main intended target.

Audio & Visuals

The audio in the game is very immersive. The ambient sounds are above par, and almost anything the cursor touches let’s off a sound, like if you run the cursor over a large bush, it’ll make the sound as if you took your hand and ran it over it. The music is soft, inviting and beautifully done throughout.

The art is done so well that, at any point, you can screenshot it as a desktop screensaver. The colors are soft, but even when bright they tend to feel soft, blending the music and art perfectly.

It’s A Wrap!!!

The journey that this old man partakes on is one that left me taking my own sort of journey, reflecting and wondering how one could make such decisions. It’s hard to say with a game that allows you take a journey of self-discovery how it should be fairly ranked, considering everything. I enjoyed my experience the entire time, and loved the art and music, though I thought the puzzles were almost too easy. I can recommend this, as it’s a solid game, though taking the plunge for a physical will have to be a choice you make on your own, as almost $50 for a game under two hours long—though highly enjoyable—is a tough sale. But, for a digital copy, the price is fair, and I’ve even seen it on sale a couple of times. So, grab your bag, head outside, and find out what matters to you when you play Old Man’s Journey.

Score: 8/10

Buy Old Man’s Journey from the eShop here.

Buy Old Man's Journey (physically) from RED ART GAMES here.

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*Review Code Provided by Broken Rules

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