Another week, another week of slacking off until the last minute figuring out what to talk about. I really wanted to play a recently released game, but I decided against playing more fucking Rouge-lites. I recently talked about death with Spiritfarer and I really wanted to pursue more games that represent a positive note on death. Death positive games are a genre that I never really thought existed, and they barely do. I was hesitant about playing a game that had to do about being a mortician.
I almost vomited at one point.
Anyway, forgiveness is something that gnaws at people. People can hold onto grudges for an absolute eternity. Thank God a story about animals destroying the moon can teach about the pains of forgiveness.
Dead people, forgiveness, mortician’s and animals, it’s all the same this week as I talk about A Mortician’s Tale and Luna.
A Mortician’s Tale is a management style game developed and published by Laundry Bear Games. It released in 2017 and won a whole bunch of awards. The game is on Mac and windows and retails for $10.
Luna on the other hand is a nice little story driven game developed and published under Funomena. It released in 2017, is on PS4 and PC and it retails for $15.
You’re Charlie, a funeral direction graduate that has taken a job at a family run funeral home, Rose and Daughters Funeral Home. You do the day-to-day mortician work up until Rose and Daughters is sold to a corporation. Strick rules are set in place and upselling funeral packages are the norm.
The story of A Mortician’s Tale is one of information. Each morning, an email appears informing you of the status of the death industry. Locally run businesses are giving way to larger businesses that care only for money. Multiple times the shitty new owner (CHAD) of the funeral home says “We find encouraging loved ones to think of the comfort and style of the deceased as an experience with no price limit on it.”
There were packages when we had to cremate my mother.
The game wanted to dedicate to informing the players, through Chalrie’s emails, the importance of death in other cultures and with that the innovations in death preservation, like green caskets, they are better for the planet and they are in fact cheaper than most options.
“A Mortician’s Tale is is greatly inspired by Caitlin Doughty and The Order of the Good Death, and is an informative, honest, and sometimes humorous look at the current state of and the future of the western death industry.“
It is quite refreshing playing a game dedicated to informing those about the positives of death, when it is something that is so unknown and perceived so negatively.
In Luna, Bird is awoken by the beautiful sound of a mysterious Owl. This song was enough for Bird to swallow the last sliver of the moon. Bird was then swooped away by the wind far from home and it is up to you to get Bird back home to complete the moon.
Luna is a game about feelings, attitudes and so much more. On Funomena’s blog they have a post about their game and how it came to fruition.
“It is what you do with your pain that matters. You can’t avoid it – but you can learn to process it and let it go. Sometimes, the pain will lead you to anger, frustration, regret. We have all lost it, felt rage, spoken words and done deeds in anger. This is also very human”
There is narration at every step of the way speaking of the struggles of life and how it can be difficult to move on, but it is always better to move forward.
Solving celestial puzzles is the way to progress to each area and once there, it is up to you to decorate the area and bring it back to life. Giving life to the area gives way to an intimate conversation between two friends. Either it be a bear, fox or swan, the outcome is the same, it is about forgiveness.
The journey is short (about an hour) but the message is deep: we suffer because we are human but it is up to us to evaluate this suffering, recognize it and move on.
Before I forget, the art is GORGEOUS. I really like the way they drew and animated everything.
Both of these games take what the story they wanted to tell very far. Death and Forgiveness are subjects that seem so taboo, but these games show both in very positive light.
I’ve done so many embalming’s that, if true, I know, in order, how to prepare a body.
I felt sick…
Then I felt better because I was playing a different game.
Play them, they’re both pretty decent games.