Blending together the wackiness of a Saturday Morning cartoon, the vivid imagination of children, and the clever puzzling of a point-and-click adventure, Lost in Play really has a LOT going for it. It also just so happens to be a whole lot of fun to play, with it easily standing out as one of the best puzzlers I’ve played on my Nintendo Switch for some time.
Check out some screenshots down below:
Lost in Play puts players in the role of siblings Tot and Gal as they embark on a wild journey through their imagination. You know how you’d invent silly scenarios in your younger years and turn the simplest of tasks into wild adventures? That’s Lost in Play in a nutshell, with the charming storytelling ensuring players will be fully invested in the kids’ journey. Interestingly, it doesn’t even use dialogue to tell its story, but rather has the pair talking gibberish and making expressions to convey their feelings; whilst this might typically make it harder to engross yourself within the narrative, it fits the tone of the adventure perfectly and actually made it more endearing. This is a kid’s tale though-and-through, but without being so childish that older players won’t appreciate it.
The adventure itself is split across multiple chapters, with each bringing new areas to explore and different types of puzzling to keep the experience varied. Whilst there’s a lot of traditional point-and-click gameplay where you’ll collect items and use them in wacky ways to progress, there are also mini-games that offer a slightly different approach. Some of these might feel familiar to some players (things like card games or guiding yourself through a maze-like road), but they’re intuitive in design and add a refreshing twist to the traditional point-and-click adventure formula.
“This is one WEIRD game, but in a brilliant way where it gets to show off endless creativity.”
Between the clever puzzle design that doesn’t feel as obtuse as that found in similar titles and the generous variety found across the mini-games, there’s plenty on offer within Lost in Play’s gameplay to keep players engrossed in the experience. Don’t get me wrong, there’ll be some moments where players might be left scratching their heads for a short while (especially in some of the more logic-driven mini-games), but it never feels tedious. And hey, if you do find yourself feeling a little stumped, the in-game hint system will give players a helping hand when required.
One of my favourite things about Lost in Play is just how off the wall it is. This is one WEIRD game, but in a brilliant way where it gets to show off endless creativity. The world design is vibrant and full of kooky sights, the characters you meet are odd but charming, whilst the puzzles have you do all sorts of strange things that somehow always make sense (often in the most baffling of ways). Best of all, it has some genuinely funny moments – whilst I’ll admit that catching a cat licking its butt made me laugh a lot more than it should have, it’s the other ways that Tot and Gal experience the world that brought the biggest smile to my face. To cap it all off, it’s also a heart-warming experience that captures the love between siblings, which is something that’ll definitely resonate with a lot of players.
Check out some screenshots down below:
It also just so happens to look fantastic, with some brilliant art on show throughout. My earlier comparison to a Saturday Morning cartoon feels spot on, with it easy to imagine Lost in Play being a show you’d watch on Cartoon Network with its imaginative art style and vibrant world. It’s easy for a lot of point-and-click adventures to feel a little samey with their visual styles, but there’s something about Lost in Play’s lookthat helps make it stand out in the crowd.
I just had a ton of fun playing through the game, with the varied adventure one that’s quickly become a personal favourite of mine. The only real issue I had with it was that it felt a little bit too easy at times – whilst there are some roadblocks, nothing in the game felt overly perplexing to make me feel like I was fully challenged. It’s easy to beat the game in under three hours too, so it’s not the meatiest adventure out there. It’s not a problem and didn’t make the experience any less enjoyable, but point-and-click veterans might find Lost in Play a little bit too easy at times.
Lost in Play Review
Lost in Play is a wonderfully whimsical adventure that kept me hooked in thanks to its imaginative world and fun variety of gameplay mechanics. Whether solving traditional point-and-click puzzles, completing a quirky mini-game, or simply taking in all the detail of the wacky world, there’s a LOT of fun to be had across your journey into the imagination of children.
It could be argued that it can be a little easy in places and it’s not the longest point-and-click adventure you’ll play, but the memorable journey you embark on ensures that Lost in Play stands out as a real gem in the genre.
Developer: Happy Juice Games
Publisher: Joystick Ventures
Platform(s): Nintendo Switch (Reviewed), PC