Limbo (2010) for XBOX 360, PS3, PC, MAC
I have been championing this little indie gem at the top of my voice since discovering it on Xbox Live Arcade last fall. To be honest, the only thing I could possibly complain about is that the exceptionally immersive experience had to end. No joke.
The logic of the game is simple: you play as a small boy who is able to run, jump, and push/pull his way through a sinister monochromatic environment wrought with twisted and inventive death traps. Storywise, we are given very little background information on the little boy or what he’s doing playing in an area with giant beheading bear traps lying around. We get scant glimpses of another character and a totally ambiguous ending, but when has this ever bothered a horror fan? The bizarreness of the environment is a large part of the game’s genius as the puzzles require some very unconventional thinking to solve.
The game was able to sustain me at the perfect balance of frustration and satisfaction for a solid two weeks (not enough!), but the artwork practically steals the show with its pitch-perfect moody atmosphere. I was so drawn to the art that I even shelled out real-people money to buy the theme for my Xbox dashboard, and if you knew how miserly I am with my MS points….
There’s a playable demo on Xbox Live but you may as well just buy it now because I told you do. You can thank me later.