Can games be considered works of art? Will games be respected at the same level as work from Van Gough or Salvador Dali? If you weren’t convinced that the gaming industry could be a platform for aspiring artists to conceptualize their artistic ideas, with games like Journey, Abzu, and The Vanishing of Ethan Carter, then you need to experience Reaching For Petals.
This game is all about experiencing the moment. It is a mysterious, beautiful, and emotional journey that you are meant to experience on your own. I won’t spoil anything here, but the story is quite touching and very relatable, one way or another. By the end credits, I was in shock at how much I was thinking about what I had just experienced and appreciated the journey to the end. With such a touching story, it made me appreciate the little things in my life. This made me realize that video games, as a medium, hold such an important part in our society and can truly impact an individual’s life, as opposed to just being used as pure entertainment.
Reaching For Petals is a first person, exploration and experience game. You play as an unknown character walking through the woods as a narrator guides you through your journey. There is no objective, other than explore the forest and take in all the wonderful sights of nature. As you progress through the game, you will find Flower petals that take you to the next chapter to experience the mysterious story behind Reaching For Petals.
During my playthrough, I was intrigued at how the game engrosses you to keep moving forward. You see, without there being any actual objective the game maintains the ability to keep you drawn in and thirsty for answers. Why am I in a forest? Whose house is this? Am I alone in this dark cave? All while the narrator is consistently guiding you on your journey and very poetically brings up philosophical ideas about various things, including life itself. The whole purpose of the game is to just experience it. The game is not very long, clocking in at maybe an hour and a half if you really take your time to enjoy the beautiful scenery, but the length was perfect for what it was intended to be…a touching story that you experience first-hand.
Running on the Unreal Engine 4, Reaching For Petals is stunningly beautiful. At times, there are sections of the game that I had to just stop moving and appreciate the beauty of the forest. The lighting is top notch here, bleeding through the leaves of a giant oak tree in realistic fashion, the sun setting across an open valley, and the moon shining bright in a starry night. Truly one of the best demonstrations of the UE4. The scenery is definitely the star here.
Experience games are known for having great journeys and wonderful stories. Sadly, this isn’t a “choose your own adventure” where you can experience different things when you start a new game. Reaching For Petals is an excellent journey with a touching story, but once the credits roll you’ve seen everything it has to offer. Not much worth going back here, unless you want to experience it with a friend or loved one.
Reaching For Petals proves that video games can be works of art. Something so Beautiful, simple, and touching can have a huge impact on an individual. Journeys are meant to be inspiring and enlightening, and that is exactly what Reaching For Petals achieves. It is a journey that anyone can experience and discover something beautiful and unexpected.
Reaching For Petals is not only a work of art, but a gorgeous experience of self-discovery and love.