Walden, a game: Critique and Evaluation

Overall, I found Walden, a game to be very intriguing. I really appreciate the layout and setup of the game—the users are able to look around and find information about things at their own will. In other words, users have the freedom to show interest in what they please and aren’t really forced to do much.

While I don’t think this works for all types of historical games, I think it works really well for this one. It’s a really neat game of survival and balances player freedom with historical information. I think it does a good job of articulating its goals—I gathered that the purpose of the game is to survive as best you can while learning about your surroundings and the life of Henry David Thoreau.

At the same time that I find the game capturing my interest, I think it does indeed lack a few things. I think the game would be much more exciting if it introduced some of the following: side quests, side goals, and leveling. I think that in order to keep a user’s interest, the game could introduce a better way in which the character could improve over time. I understand that things such as building the house encapsulate this idea, but I don’t think it does so on a high-enough scale. For example, if it wanted introduce this (in a historical way), it could have fishing, building, and even philosophy skills that the player could level up over time.

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