Indie adventure Stranded leaves you on an alien planet

Emanuel Maiberg

It's hard to watch that Stranded trailer and not compare it to The Dig, a golden era LucasArts adventure game known for being written by Steven Spielberg and Orson Scott Card. Both adventure games have you exploring an alien, perhaps abandoned planet rendered in beautiful pixel art, though it wasn't considered retro in 1995 when The Dig was released.

At this point, Stranded has been compared to The Dig often enough for developer Peter Moorhead to answer the question on his blog. “If we're giving off some of the same atmosphere as it, that's great, and extremely flattering actually,” he said, “but it wasn't a style or tone we specifically tried to emulate: Stranded will play out very differently to how The Dig did.”

That's probably a good thing. The Dig had great atmosphere, creepy without resorting to jump scares, and subtly beautiful. Its best puzzles also made you think like an archaeologist, trying to make sense of the remnants of disappeared culture (something that Stranded seems to touch upon as well). But there were also plenty of bad puzzles, with some of the most obtuse examples in the genre, and a ton of pixel hunting.

Hopefully, that's one way in which Stranded is very different. You can find out right now by buying the game from its official website for $7. At the moment, it's not available on Steam.

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