Museum of Mechanics: Lockpicking

“Museum of Mechanics: Lockpicking” by Dim Bulb Games (Johnnemann Nordhagen) & Lysandra Nelson.

“[A] browsable, playable collection of lockpicking mechanics from various games. The intended audience is game developers looking to explore the range of lockpicking mechanics that have been implemented in the past.”


Video game preservation is important; that is something no one can debate. But what about the preservation of video game mechanics? Well, one game is doing just that: This digital exhibition called “Museum of Mechanics: Lockpicking”, made by Dim Bulb Games (creator of “Where The Water Tastes Like Wine”), aims to be “a browsable buffet of example mechanics for lockpicking.” As a game designer myself, this immediately looked interesting to me. Recreating a single mechanic from a game for designers to study is an excellent venture, and I admire the commitment and passion it takes to build something like that.

The actual game is rather basic, but it gets the job done. There are few signs discussing the goal of the game and giving the credits, and each lock has a small podium with the background, the mechanics, and an analysis of the exhibit. It is a tidy little game, and with the only sound being your footsteps, it really simulates the atmosphere of a museum.

A nice variety of lockpicking mechanics from popular game series like “Deus Ex” and “Thief” to “The Elder Scrolls” and “Fallout” can be found here. Opening the locks feels also pretty darn satisfying, which was something I admittedly did not expect. So far, there are only eight exhibits right now, but more are planned, and the developer Johnnemann Nordhagen is taking suggestions on Twitter. Dim Bulb Games also hopes to continue this series to explore other commonly implemented game mechanics. I cannot wait to see how this digital museum and its future installments might flourish in the future. [PLAY]

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