iOS Universal, PC/Mac/Linux •
You’re probably sick and tired of me talking about Thimbleweed Park around these parts, but I know a lot of our readers are mobile gamers first and foremost, so I also know many of you have probably ignored my earlier praises of the game. You’re probably also aware that the previous sentence is an abomination of word structure and nearly, but not quite, a run-on sentence. That sentence wasn’t much better. Shorter, but not better. What I’m trying to say is, mobile gamers can now experience the joy I’ve had playing Thimbleweed Park because it’s currently on the App Store.
Thimbleweed Park is the love child of Ron Gilbert and Gary Winnick, the two gents responsible for a good chunk of our point-and-click nostalgia from the ’80s and ’90s. Remember games like Monkey Island, spending time searching for pixels so you could pick up items and use them in completely illogical ways to overcome obstacles? My guess is you don’t. Well, not the finding pixels part. Instead, the part that really stays with you is the humor. Those games were actually funny, with humor ranging from delicious puns to satire.
That’s Thimbleweed Park in a nutshell. Yes, the illogical puzzles are still there, but it’s self-aware enough to realize the puzzles are all part of the joke. A big part of those puzzles is the interaction between characters, many of which you control. You can switch between numerous characters both in the present and the past, and leave yourself items and clues that you wouldn’t have been able to parse without help from one of your alter egos.
The iOS version is Universal and runs $10, but take a look at this blurb:
A haunted hotel, an abandoned circus, a burnt-out pillow factory, a dead body pixelating under the bridge, toilets that run on vacuum tubes… you’ve never visited a place like Thimbleweed Park before.
Five people with nothing in common have been drawn to this rundown, forgotten town. They don’t know it yet, but they are all deeply connected. And they’re being watched.
…Who is Agent Ray really working for and will she get what they want?
…What does Junior Agent Reyes know about a 20 year old factory fire that he’s not saying?
…Will the ghost, Franklin, get to speak to his daughter again?
…Will Ransome the *Beeping* Clown ever become a decent human being?
…Will aspiring game developer Delores abandon her dreams and stick by her family?
…And most importantly: how come no one cares about that dead body?
None of that is hyperbole. There’s a cool mystery at the heart of Thimbleweed Park, and all the comedy and puzzles are window dressing to the story being told. Have I mentioned it’s pretty great?