This was posted on April Fool's day
A lot of great games explore the idea of loss and the tragedy that can come as a result of losing something. The world’s greatest shooter, Crysis, for example, is directionless title with a limp narrative. Its design forces users to experience regret and grief as they travel around a lifeless open-world devoid of contextual clues or activities. Playing the game is experiencing loss first hand, since when compared to other shooters, Crysis lacks brick-and-mortar, taken-for-granted elements like goals, end points, or basic level design.
But how many games deal with finding -- finding that thing that is lost? I can’t think of a single one except Find the Rabbit [$1.99] for the iPad, iPod Touch, and Mac App Store. Alas, it’s not a good game.
Find the Rabbit opens innocently, enough. You stare at a captivating mound of grass with bits and pieces of delicious wood scattered about. And in this mound, right below a patch of beautiful golden flowers, are a rabbit’s ears. This is the rabbit, the goal, the end point, the object that guides the ebb and flow of the experience.
But as brilliant as this first area is, it highlights the obnoxious problems with the title -- the rabbit is poorly hidden, for starters, but he’s also a cartoon that is poorly implemented into a portrait that looks like it was taken from a royalty-free photo site. And when you click him? Oh, there’s another problem with that.
You see, if this experience was all, really, about finding our dear rabbit, wouldn’t the rabbit be relieved or frightened to see us? Why is he flashing a stupid grin? Who are we to the rabbit, you’ll be left asking as you play, and what does this game have to say about our endeavor to find this hidden animal?
The answers can’t be found in the game, nor are they alluded to otherwise, which is an unfortunate problem that makes Find the Rabbit impossible to recommend. So much more could have been done here, but the rabbit betrays no expression that conjures a meaning to us, nor does he seem intent on actually hiding. Also, the game doesn’t fill us in on the issues surrounding his disappearance or the chase to find him.
The rest of the game features nothing more than several other real-life portraits, some of which feature snow, corn stalks, other flowers, and other odd outside worlds. But the rabbit sticks out like a sore thumb in each, providing little challenge.
Also, it’s harder than I’d like to scroll between environments. You’d figure with a total of three inputs the developer could nail the touch implementation, but no dice here.
Overall, I just want more out of Find the Rabbit. Why do I need to look for him? Why is he lost to me? Why doesn’t he hide better? Where is the Game Center and co-op support? Also, why is the rabbit continuing to run away and into other exotic places? There are no answers or hints in Find the Rabbit, which is perhaps the worst thing about it.
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