Today when this post goes live on the 11th November 2018 it is remembrance sunday and the anniversary of the end of the 1st World War. I do like to acknowledge different events and seasons within my posts so today we have This War of Mine.
This War of Mine is a war survival video game inspired by the 1992–96 Siege of Sarajevo during the Bosnian War. This War of Mine differs from most in that it focuses on the impact of war on civilians.
You play as a group of survivors in a half ruined house spending the day time improving your home, building devices to harvest resources and improve the houses defences from other civilians desperate enough to try to raid your home. At night, you take one of the party out to explore different locations in search of much needed supplies. Throughout the game random encounters and events add to the challenge of helping your group survive until the war is over.
Putting its darker subject matter to one side what you find is a great survival game offering a challenging experience. One that I kept finding myself coming back to trying to improve and ensure all my people survive the ordeal is as healthy a state as I could. There is a real risk vs reward side to the game, time is limited and when scavenging for resources you have to be aware of how long you’re taking, how much noise you make and how justified your choices are e.g. do you steal from seemingly peaceful people in order to benefit your people?
As well as being a great survival game, This War of Mine explores the moral decisions and hardships that come from being caught up in war. There are some darker moments, times when some of your group may become ill or be struggling and at those times you feel the extra pressure to push your luck and find the medicine or supplies you need to help them.
This War of Mine is a unique experience. Often in gaming events are simplified into winnable scenarios with good guys and bad guys, violence is often celebrated and glorified with you placed firmly as the hero of the story. With enough practice most people can learn how a game works and how to improve and get better. This War of Mine though stands out because it doesn’t simplify things. There are moments in your play through where you think you might actually have the hang of things only to find the next day that you are struggling or everyone dies.
The graphics and music just add to the experiance the largely grey colour pallet fits perfectly with the gritty setting and the peacful and at times sad musical score adds to the experiance.
This War of Mine is a great and challenging survival game offering a unique experiance complete with resource management and survival putting its subject matter aside. However, its a game that keeps reminding you of its serious subject matter. Faced with physical and moral challenges, it doesn’t sugar coat things but offers a more honest and open representation of the consiquences of war and violence.
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