“Detours” by Mismatched Games (Autumn Rain, Kinsey Erickson, Roscoe Rappaport, Samantha Ivonne Ortiz & Plum) & Jade Leamcharaskul.
“[It is] time to move across the country, and the only person with a car is your ex-partner. Suck up your pride and play through your trip and relationship’s road bumps, obstacles, and detours. Witty dialogue and moments of quiet, human connection are interspersed on a trip that reflect the oddities and struggles of Midwestern drives.”
Full disclosure right ahead:
Naomi “Bez” Norbez used a free key of “Detours”, provided by Mismatched Games, to play the game and write an article about it.
Daniella is in a weird situation. She is moving back in with her parents, leaving Old York. However, the only one she could find to drive her is her ex Mish. As you can imagine, things get awkward. That is the premise for “Detours”, a game about road trips and broken relationships. It is a short, simple game that explores some complex topics in its runtime. There are also collectibles to find along the way.
I am struggling to find words to capture my experience with it. On the one hand, the game is short and flawed, poking at topics that it could have explored in more detail, but did not. It is not as deep of an experience as I would like. But on the other hand, the things it does explore are hard, complicated things. Daniella and Mish had a complicated relationship, and the game does its best to present that complexity in the time it has. From my perspective, I saw a messy, flawed bond, that broke apart because communication broke down from the inside out, ending everything. “Detours” made me think long and hard about my own breakup, and that is an achievement on the game’s part.
The art style of the game is also very cute, with its cartoon humans who have detailed, emotional expressions. I loved seeing what new pit stop I would be walking to when the game made me do so, exploring the area and seeing my drawn surroundings. I also noticed that the font is OpenDyslexic, which is a nice, inclusive touch. All in all, “Detours” is a very good game, and I would recommend you give this half visual novel, half top-down adventure into the mundane a play. [PLAY]