I'm like 100% for sure buying this game from the developers of World of Goo and the creator of Henry Hatsworth. Figured I might as well start this thread up now because this "game"? sounds very bizarre. No goals, just... burn stuff? But there has to be more, right?
@Secret_Tunnel You really didn't know what was meant by this can't last forever? Hmm. I was actually emailing a bit with Kyle Gray and he said something about how he wonders if only our generation (30s) will "get" it, I think meaning that the younger generation may not?
And, if my interpretation is correct, I may understand what he meant? I hope none of this comes off as condescending, but I think there are definitely things that you understand a bit more the older you get.
So here goes. This is just an interpretation, but I think it is pretty accurate. Basically the whole fireplace thing / etc. represents any sort of "addiction" that we are wasting time on while putting off like... actually actively engaging in life and doing the things we really want to do? And one thing that I think a lot of people in their late 20s / early 30s start to really begin to understand about life is that there really is NOT that much time IE "this can't last forever", and the more time you spend dicking around on these time wasting things thinking "I'll do A, B, and C (your goals / dreams / etc.) tomorrow", the more likely it is that you will never actually do A, B, and C, because tomorrow comes FAST. This kind of hits me personally because I basically wasted my 20s. Not a spoiler really, but it could give away a bit, lol. So the reason I thought the ending was so awesome is because it was about finally waking up and cutting yourself free from time-wasting addictions and deciding to actively engage in life, follow your goals and dreams, etc., and... this is something that I am personally trying to do at the moment.
I think the house burning down is a pretty powerful metaphor too, because it's basically saying that you may have to completely destroy the things holding you back in order to move forward, which also fits with the whole you can never go back idea. Basically breaking free from whatever is controlling you.
I'm not sure if I explained this in the best way, but it all made sense to me in a very personal way. And of course there is more to it... the consumerism, corporatism, etc. all of these different angles all tie into this together. But I think at the core of it is simply the message that time is a real thing, and you can easily waste it all if you get caught up in pointless things that keep you from doing the things important to you... but you can also break out and start living as well...
Again, just my interpretation.
And yeah, again, not to sound condescending or anything, but I think this stuff doesn't really hit home until you start to get older. Late teens / early 20s it's easy to feel like the world is your oyster. Here is an interesting Douglas Coupland quote, somewhat connected to what I'm trying to say...
“By the age of twenty, you know you're not going to be a rock star. By twenty-five, you know you're not going to be a dentist or any kind of professional. And by thirty, darkness starts moving in- you wonder if you're ever going to be fulfilled, let alone wealthy and successful. By thirty-five, you know, basically, what you're going to be doing for the rest of your life, and you become resigned to your fate..."
But I think the awesome thing about Little Inferno is that he isn't resigned to his "fate", he breaks free...
I get all that. I mean more in regards to the world getting colder not being able to last forever. I guess the city getting closer and closer to being completely frozen could represent people getting closer and closer to death?
One thing that I've seen people saying is that the end of the game probably takes place years after the beginning. Sugar Plumps looks older, and when you bring Miss Nancy the coupon she says that they haven't printed those in years.
What do you think about the sun appearing towards the end of the game? Is it rising or setting?
Well I think the game has so many messages on so many levels, which is why it is brilliant. I mean, another way to look at "this can't last forever" is the whole angle of mindless consumerism / corporatism without thought for the environment will eventually destroy our planet.
I'd say it is definitely supposed to have taken years, another thing pointing towards that is the mailman's comments at the end, something about having delivered hundreds and hundreds of things to you... unless he made multiple stops every day? Plus my whole theory above wouldn't make much sense if he hadn't wasted a bunch of his life first.
I'm not sure that I have a concrete answer for the sun. I took it as sort of a metaphor, like whether it is rising or setting depends on whether one is ready to engage in life or has just given up. I may be reading a bit too much into this game, heh...
BTW I just now realized something about combos that maybe should have been obvious, which is that they're actually IN ORDER in order, not just by catalog like I thought they were, which means if you have combos before and after finished you can really narrow down one of the items in the combo, sometimes exactly. This is helping me with some of these later ones A LOT.
Nah, I think most of the metaphors were probably intended. World of Goo was the same way.
I'm pretty sure the number that the mailman gives you is the actual number of items you ordered over the course of the game.
I think the sun is supposed to be that thing that finally snaps you out of the time-wasting. I was planning on spending a lot more time with this game trying to get all the combos before beating it, but then once they mentioned the sun and I saw it in the catalog, I finally had another more meaningful goal to work towards. And now I don't really care to go back and get the rest of the combos at all. They're not rewarding to me, they're just as an excuse to keep playing.
Probably the best part of this game is how self-defeating it is. The ultimate goal of Little Inferno is to stop caring about Little Inferno! Just thinking about it is making me care less and less about trophy-hunting. Do I really need to platinum Dead Space?
I like getting the combos, they are like mini puzzles. Of course, after realizing the thing mentioned above, they have become a bit easier. I only have 4 left now.
I feel though like maybe a bit too many of them rely upon observing some characteristic in the image or description of an object that isn't inherently related to the object itself. Like the fact that gravity boy attracts roses in the image you get of him. There aren't a ton like this, but more than I needed. And there aren't enough combos that are truly clever. I think there could have been.
Still, it's fun. Almost finished. I wonder if I will get anything by finishing. I feel like the ultimate message of the game would be to give me absolutely nothing.
I figured it was a game reference, but still, are roses actually a part of that game, or did they just throw it into the image for that in order to create that combo? Whatever the case, considering that most people probably never played that, it just kind of requires looking through every object until you go "oh, this one has roses in the image!"
Don't get me wrong, I enjoy the combos, I just think they could have executed it a bit better.
On a side note, I had a dream about this game last night. I forget the details, but it was something about me just going about my daily life but having to create "combos" out of every day objects. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhh, it's going to get in my head now! Let's see, what combo can I make out of the stuff on my desk here? STICKY SITUATION COMBO = tape + post-it notes. OLD YELLOW'ER = pencil + banana + post-it notes. KEYMASTER COMBO = set of keys + keyboard. Um...
Hmm. But more people would see it on Gamefaqs, and then you link them here. I'm too lazy anyway.
So... all 99 combos done. What you get for doing it is... a Tomorrow Corporation mouse pad. Which you most likely just burn right away. Not that I was expecting much more, but I did hope for a bit more story?
The weird thing is only 4 of my catalogs have a little star by them. I wonder what it is for? I assumed it was related to the combos but I got them all and... still missing stars.
Finally got the game. It's a little bit more disturbing than excepted, I don't think the nieces will be touching this one, what with the schoolbus full of things that scream when on fire...
The game is compelling in its own way, but I'm not sure I like the puzzle design of the combos, which is very rigid. You either do exactly what the designers want you to do, or you don't and you fail to solve the puzzle. It's not a problem when the directions are clear and obvious, though it does make for a boring puzzle. When it's vague and therefore challenging, you really have no idea what clue you're supposed to pick up on or what the designers want you to figure out.
I kind of want to cheat through some of these puzzles, but that's all there is to the game, so I hesitate.
@Secret_Tunnel I see. I'm tempted to get all the gold stars to see what it does for you, but... I can't imagine it will be much.
I'm totally going to do it though, aren't I? Ug.
@Guillaume To be honest the puzzles could have been better designed. Some of the are clever though. And most makes sense once you get them, it's just... they might not have been the only thing that made sense.
The gameplay basically comes down to solving riddles and paying attention to the objects. I said earlier that I planned on spending quite a bit of time just directionlessly playing with the different objects and experimenting, but I feel like I already got that from solving a good chunk of the combos.
I still want to make a few more "art" pieces to post to the. But otherwise I think I'm done. My final time with this game was like 15+ hours! Mind you, a lot of that time was me kind of half playing it, half writing down notes for the review.