- Ladies and Gentlemen, I know you’ve been craving it, desperately looking forward to it, and have been unable to cope without it! But… my review of Flappy Bird has to wait. Today, we are going to be talking about Birthdays the Beginning, for the PS4 and PC.
Birthdays the Beginning, by ARC System Works, will be exactly what it sounds like and that isn’t a bad thing. It will draw on themes seen all throughout history. From the great lyrical works of the Greeks, to contemporary artists like Dali and a touch of Miyamoto. A cornucopia of adventure and discovery awaits you in…Birthdays the Beginning!
The game bravely will center on the very first child to have a birthday. Her name is Bobbi (yes with the “I”, old-timers were hip once too) and she is born. Without spoiling too much of the plot; the first level of Birthdays the Beginning (which I played in a dream with my cousin Tim) is all about the escape. Or Perhaps it’s a forced removal?
The brilliance about this game is that you decide who is the hero and who is the villain. Not quite in the sense of a “Choose your own adventure” novel, but instead in a morally ambiguous tapestry of right vs. wrong and the grey areas in between. Either way you must fight every step of the way through this first level and truly test you as a gamer. It is challenging. It is emotionally rough. In the end, don’t get one of those freebee achievements we have all come to expect from finishing the first level of the game. I know what you’re thinking and I was upset at this choice too. However, while not getting this achievement hurts for a moment, it is ultimately for the best.
After the first level you are exposed to the first year of Bobbi’s life. The ultimate goal? Make it to your first birthday; the very first birthday. You will fight like no baby ever has against all sorts of things that want to kill your tiny stone-age ass. Dinosaurs. Bacteria. Angry older people that are totes jelly of your sweet upcoming first birthday. They’re all there, and they all want you dead. Throughout the game you will learn to be a better, stronger, and more capable infant, and will challenge those around you not to lose sight of their own infancy.
While Birthdays the Beginning does stray sometimes into the “heavy” RPG area with a higher number of choices ever counted on Sesame Street, it never feels bogged down with choice. Instead, you are freed by it. You will, undoubtedly, sometimes lose sight of the fact that this is only a video game. You have so much freedom that it feels like “ a real life” that you are experiencing. Everything from crawling, to smiling slightly, and even looking dumbfounded at the world is an option which makes these features pivotal to the game itself. You lose yourself in the options, and in doing so; you find yourself.
As you know I’m not comfortable giving quantitative scores for reviews, but for Birthdays the Beginning I’m going to break my rule. I give it 5 goos out of gaa gaa.
Birthday the Beginning came out May 9th, 2017 for the PS4 and on Steam. Be sure to check it out!