Another week, another episode of Grimm! This time around Grimm visits the well-known tale of “Puss in Boots” – to ridicule the idea that an intelligent, talking cat would be selfless servant to a bumbling imbecile.
During the week since we released Episode 3, Grimm garnered further praise from reviewers and players alike. Maximum PC gave a 7 score on a combined review of the first two episodes, saying:
To begin each episode, Grimm narrates a puppet show version of a fairy tale as it has traditionally been told. The snarky commentary grants these sequences undeniable charm, which is further enhanced by the simple character models and animation. The pastel colors and blocky figures make the game look like a storybook illustration come to life.
Great review! Although they incorrectly state the game is rated “M” and warn against exposing kids to it. Actually, it’s a Teen rating, so a little exposure might not completely warp your children.
The “target audience” question is one I’ve seen a few times now. I guess the fact the question exists says something about our product positioning (or lack thereof). And I’ll be the first to admit the “aim” is quite wide. I think that’s partly a result of the core mechanic: We’re working with “children’s tales”, but striving to make them darker. Things start off looking “Disney” and end up looking Manson Family. So the target audience depends entirely on which side of the tale you’re looking at.
Another way of stating it: Each episode starts as “E” but the game goal is to convert everything to “M”.
Makes me wonder if Grimm could be used as an instructional video for ESRB reviewers. “See this flower? This is E. Now see how the flower converts into a child’s skull with blood shooting from th eye sockets? That’s M.”
Ultimately, the narrative goal of all this “transforming things to dark” is to resuscitate fairy tales once breaming with bloody, nasty, scary, LIFE. Somewhere during the Disney-facation of children’s entertainment society decided that “protected children” grew up to be to better, healthier adults. Perhaps. Perhaps not.
Personally, I’m inclined to believe our mental “defenses” work best when inoculated through exposure and adaption. Same way our immune system functions. Children exposed to the dirty, gritty, caterpillar eating, dog poo playing, window licking reality of the world develop better and stronger immune systems compared to tykes raised “in a bubble”. We don’t live in a bubble – so we have a hard time living in the real world when raised in one – works whether we’re talking about mental, physical, or “other” aspects of our being.
I say, “Let your children eat caterpillars! And let them play Grimm!”
Just don’t blame me if they take to running around peeing on everything.