Release Date: March 16, 2021
Reviewed On: PC
Quitting your job is never easy, but there are circumstances when you just have to get away. We get to explore this in the narrative game, Adios, where we witness a pig farmer who wants a new career path. Sadly, his work isn’t as cut-and-dry as simply moving onto something else, made more complicated by the fact that he’s in dealings with the mob.
Adios puts you in the role of a pig farmer. However, actions that the farmer has made throughout his life have led him to this day. The opening scene alone shows the grim situation propelling the farmer’s mindset into making a decision that could cost him his life.
Gameplay revolves around going through the daily routine on the farm, all the while having conversations with your coworker, whom you seem to trust a great deal. You’ll go about your chores, such as milking goats and shoveling manure while explaining both your livelihood and your reasoning for wanting to withdraw from work.
Alongside your chores, you get to play some minigames, such as throwing horseshoes. However, these minigames are a bit of a contrast to the overall tone and atmosphere the game is going for. Nevertheless, it doesn’t detract too much from the emotional weight it carries.
Completing these mundane tasks allows you to explore the farmland surrounding you. Though the game’s art-style isn’t necessarily outstanding on its own, it does a fair job of immersing the player into the farmer’s world. To add to this, the chats between you and your confidant are full of quality banter and have great voice actor performances, which heightens the level of engrossment.
The first half of Adios involves a heavy dose of back-and-forth dialogue between the two characters. While the lines themselves provide a solid level of engagement and perspective for both of them, the sheer amount of lines can be quite overwhelming, especially for a game that’s about an hour long.
It doesn’t help that your level of interactivity is quite limited. Sometimes, you can have a bit of fun with your tasks, such as squirting milk from the goat onto your coworker. But other times, you’re just stuck in the same 3-foot radius for minutes as you talk and watch him try to fix your car. Regardless, the dialogue is well-written, but it causes the scenes to drag.
Further, the level of interactivity isn’t just limited there. Once the long-winded conversations are over, you have time to explore your farm to finish up some things. However, there really isn’t much to do or explore. With what little actions you do have, the controls were a bit stiff and clunky, as I had to press some buttons multiple times for something to occur.
To top it off, some of the dialogue “options” are actually just internal thoughts to provide contextual information, thus limiting you to one selectable option. This ends up providing a good sense of what the farmer wants to say but can’t and makes the game’s motions feel a bit too constrained.
There’s already so little to do that having them force a choice isn’t really helpful for the gameplay when you get to these options. This is quite unfortunate, considering the impact and emotion the story brought out of me. The narrative is wonderfully told, but it seems like I’m watching a game more so than playing it.
This brings me to my main conflict with this game. While I think the plot is strong and convincing, I wonder if using a video game as the medium was the smart choice. This could have easily been great to watch as a film. Unfortunately, this hour-long adventure is $17.99.
Adios excels in its creative writing through its complicated moral narrative. The characters are shown as complex even with a short runtime, and it’s easy to get emotionally invested in this farmer’s life. However, the limited interactivity really weighs on the experience as it drags in places that make it feel longer than it is. I wasn’t sold on the direction and really felt like there could have been a lot more here.
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