All The Delicate Duplicates is a soloplay game that defies being placed in a category. It’s available from developers Mez Breeze and Andy Campbell on Steam for $7.99. It’s a short game. Although we enjoyed it on stream in just under an hour, the story didn’t feel wholly resolved at the end. For one thing, most items in the game are only observed and replaced, except for a single zip drive. There are computers everywhere in the game, but I never found a place for it. Not to worry, the game is built to be replayed and explored and that’s just what I did.
The game felt like it ended suddenly, leaving me to puzzle out the implications of the story. I spent most of the game trying to identify the relationships between the characters, though no character is ever explicitly visualized. This question was finally answered at the “end.” Much of the story unfolded itself to me after I turned the game off. I found myself returning to the game in my mind again and again, puzzling over it and thinking about the way it made me feel.
The exploratory style of the game felt a little like “Gone Home.” The complex emotional power of the game underlies the entire non-linear story, but reverberates long after the game is turned off and the player walks away. The game deals with mental health issues, quantum physics, grief and love, and the ties that bind a family. My scores for this game only went up the more I reflected on it. I would absolutely recommend it. Explore the nooks and crannies of the game world. The world is beautiful with poetry written on the wind and the walls. Take time with them. Read the words in Mo’s diary, and Charlotte’s, and the computer notes. Together, these paint a story of a beautiful, broken family.
I recommend this beautiful story written against a gorgeous world in a revolutionary style.