One of my favourite areas at the Rezzed event has always been the Leftfield Collection. First because it’s smaller and more intimate than other rooms; tucked away in the vaults at the Tobacco Dock venue, there’s only space for one game for each developer. Second, because it offers something a little different: it’s an area for eclectic titles which do things a little bit differently. There’s always something there which takes me by surprise and manages to catch my eye unexpectedly.
One such game on show this year was Four Last Things, a point-and-click adventure by Joe Richardson made from Renaissance-era paintings and public domain recordings of classical music. I’m not going to lie, it was the last title added to my Rezzed to-do list; it certainly looked unique but I wondered whether it would be a little too leftfield for my gaming tastes. I’m glad I took a chance on it though because it turned out to be one of my favourite games I had the opportunity to play at the event.
Richardson’s project is about the Four Last Things – Death, Judgement, Heaven and Hell – and what could be a heavy subject matter is given a cheeky spin. After a strange and twisted dream, our mighty protagonist sets out on a quest for forgiveness. After many miles he finally reaches the end of his great pilgrimage but is then told by the priests that he has arrived at the wrong church! Due to some bizarre clerical error, the sins he has committed throughout his life aren’t valid in this catchment area; and so he’s forced to go out and commit them all over again in order to be absolved.
The official website says that Four Last Things is ‘kind of like if Monkey Island had been made in 16th century Flanders, by a time-travelling Monty Python fanboy’ – and I couldn’t have put it better myself. It’s almost like being sucked into one of Terry Gilliam’s legendary vignettes and experiencing all of the humour that goes along with them. I love the animations of the characters talking (take at the trailer above) and the fact that the game mocks itself and the paintings it’s based on. For example, at the beginning of the demo I played, the protagonist asks a particular NPC whether he’s smoking a pipe or eating porridge through a straw.
Speaking of the demo, I didn’t make it through to the end whilst at Rezzed. After five or so minutes of playing I knew that I was going to go straight home after the event to buy Four Last Things and I so stepped away from the keyboard, not wanting to spoil the experience. If you’re a fan of adventure games, do yourself a favour and check this out as soon as possible.
In light of how much I enjoyed Richardson’s game, I’ve decided to make another small change to the titles I’m going to be playing during the Gamely Giving marathon stream at the end of the month. You’ll be able to watch me playing this adventure from 04:00 GMT on Saturday, 29 April 2017 over on the Twitch channel.