I first came across the power rush of pressure washing while scrolling through Twitter. Videos of people methodically blasting dirt into oblivion as they clean their grubby driveways, dirty cars, and grimy garages are mesmerising to watch. Unfortunately, I don't own one of these powerful machines, but the demo for FuturLab's PowerWash Simulator lets me obliterate every last speck of dirt (and all my stresses) into nothing.
PowerWash Sim plays out like House Flipper, Train Station Renovation, and Viscera Cleanup Detail: games that find satisfaction in cleaning up a big ol' mess. In the demo, your first client, Suzie, would like the exterior of her house cleaned. In her email, Suzie explained that she had just divorced her good-for-nothing husband and wanted a fresh start, starting with stripping the house clean from years of dirt build-up. Suzie, I am here for you. I support your decisions and want to give you the house you deserve.
I arrive at Suzie's house and the situation is pretty bad. The front door, windows, porch, garage, driveway, and roof are all filthy, you can barely see the original paintwork underneath the thick layer of dirt.
It's super nasty so it's time to put my power washer to the test and begin cleaning.
The power washer works like a dream. Dirt disintegrates at my will, and soon enough the front door and porch are sparkling. There are a surprising number of nooks and crannies where dirt can hide away, and you can switch between three different nozzles to deal with those awkward spots. You can blast a huge area with the yellow hose, get more pin-point precision with the red hose, and then there's the orange one—the best hose of the bunch. It's the perfect size for meticulous cleaning and its rectangle shape is the ideal size for cleaning the driveways tiles.
I realise I sound ridiculous writing about PowerWash nozzles, but it impacts how satisfying the cleaning feels. The enjoyment of PowerWash Sim, and cleaning sims in general, comes from the same feeling as completing small tasks in life sims, or doing repetitive tasks in open-world games. It's just nice to kick back, switch your brain off, and do some menial tasks.
The PowerWash Sim demo is free to download and play over on Itch.io, and the game's Steam page says that it will launch into Early Access 'Fall 2020'.