Unpacking can mean a variety of things in itself, and this Zen puzzle game capitalizes on that nostalgic feeling of moving from place to place. I think it's safe to say that all of us, at one point in our lives, have experienced what it's like to pack up our possessions into boxes as we move onward to a new chapter in our lives, but while the game perfectly captures that moment in time in a quirky pixel-art package, is it worth spending time over, especially on mobile?Table of contents:
Even the many pops and clicks - particularly the hearty pop that emptying a box rewards you with - are incredibly satisfying, and it all adds to that overall sense of accomplishment that you get when you're tidying up your clutter.
If you want to make the most of the game's puzzle element, however, you should organize items and set them in specific locations. Silverware, for instance, can't just be thrown onto the bed willy-nilly. You'll need to open up cupboards, slide out drawers, stack books on shelves, and neatly fold your shirts to make sure everything is in its place. Items that shouldn't be where they are will be highlighted as you come to the end of each chapter, and you'll need to find the right place for them before you can move on to the next bit.
Of course, turning off the puzzle element solves this problem, but one of my major gripes with the game is that it just doesn't feel like it's best played on small handheld devices. I initially thought that a drag-and-drop game would be perfect on mobile, but given the tiny nature of some items (others I couldn't even identify), I almost always had to struggle with my finger getting in the way despite the zoom feature. My finger kept obstructing my view when it came to things like spoons and pens (effectively giving me a headache after playing for a while), and I couldn't help but wish there were a mouse cursor I could use instead.
My issues with the touch controls kept me from having the advertised Zen experience, as it was mostly just frustration rather than relaxation. If you manage to power through, though, you'll be rewarded with a poignant story that's told entirely by the things that carry on with every new house move. I won't spoil the narrative for you, but suffice it to say that our possessions really do say a great deal about us and the life we leave behind.