Games I beat in 2017: #7 Lifeline

When the Apple Watch released I heard about a game you could “play” on it, by responding to text messages. My good buddy Alex messaged me a while back and asked me if I played Lifeline. I hadn't and he wanted someone to talk about the game with. I said I was holding off on making frivolous purchases, but heh was kind enough to gift me a copy. So I played it.

The watch idea was cute enough, but it ended up being a little too much scrolling at times. Playing in the app was easier. I guess that was the destiny of the Apple Watch. Only to succeed where things are easier. And some things are easier. But not playing Lifeline.

The gimmick enough wouldn't have made it worth playing, but it has a neat story. You assist Taylor as they (their gender status is never mentioned, so use your) try to survive after their spacecraft crashes onto a planet.

It's a bunch of simple branches. You choose one of two options and the story plays out. Not everything is good advice, and you might end up killing Taylor by giving some poor advice. It can be a bit frustrating when you there are two choices, neither of which you deem appropriate. I didn't feel like being snarky to this poor lost person. But sometimes it was either snark or pushing them in a direction I didn't like either, so it could be hard to choose.

But choose I did, and Taylor only died once in my adventure. At this point I was able to “rewind” to any spot and disable the “real-time” waiting.

Oh yeah, so I suppose that’s another gimmick. It's “real-time” in that if Taylor says they are going to walk for an hour, it'll be an hour before you hear back. Which is interesting. It takes some pressure off of the game and you go and check the status like you'd keep off and on touch with a friend throughout the workday. Only this friend is stranded on a planet.

Of course it gets a little wonky when there is a split second decision to be made and you ignore Taylor for a day or two. But it's a game and the designers put gameplay above realism, so Taylor will wait, no matter how important the choice will be.

There’s a sequel, Silent Night which I picked up because I enjoyed the first one well enough. So that's my praise for the game. It’s a neat story told in a neat way.