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Game about cleaning. Not convinced yet? So what about a game about cleaning after alien massacre? As ridiculous as it sounds, cleaning can be fun! If you still not feeling it this game is not for you. But if you do, then this game could steal some precious time from you. It stole from me for sure. So I decided that I will give it even more writing this post in which I will provide some feedback and do some brainstorming about features I would like too see in this game. It is an early access game after all (I do those kind of post to other games not necessarily in beta/afla/EA/whatever you call it state so I still would write it even if it come out) . But even for a game in early state of development it still provides fun not only for those with obsessive-compulsive disorder.

How do I play this game

Before we start I’d like to present you how I play the game so you can understand the perspective from which I say such things. I have played the free preview and finished it fully once or two times. I also played every spinoff but finished fully only shadow warrior one. Only played single player. Hours spent with data from my steam account (I played them in the same order I wrote them, if that matters):

Viscera Cleanup Detail free alpha prototype – ? h

Viscera Cleanup Detail: Shadow Warrior – 3.5 h

Viscera Cleanup Detail: Santa’s Rampage – 1.8 h

Viscera Cleanup Detail – 5.4 h

The way I play this game is just cleaning stuff and absorbing the climate of the game. I don’t know why but I find it extremely easy to immerse. Maybe because it makes much sense? You know “someone have to clean up that shit!”. Aesthetics also help with this. Dark locations with fine lighting which comes that have many colors. I love that combination (just like Christmas lights!). They are appealing to the eye and also strengthen the feel of loneliness which leads to that I have to do this all mess by myself. I find very compelling and very different from what I usually play. Game can actually learn you something. All is on you and you won’t make any progress until you start doing something. Effect won’t be visible immediately, it will be slowly but surely progress and only when you are willing to do you job properly. I also listen to broadcasts/interviews/lectures/musics while playing this game which you also find yourself doing when making big cleaning in real life. That leads to the next part of this post.

Music suggestions

Radio. Game should have feature that puts our mp3s, favorite internet radios or youtube videos into the game. Almost every time when I am playing this game I also play the youtube videos in the background. Adjusting the sound each time is a bit annoying. Also I would like to see the things I’m listening to to be part of the world so when I’m far away from my radio it sounds different. Also the echo from the speakers could be fine addition that would make this world even more real. These are the ways it could be implemented:

  • We can add our mp3 from hard drive
  • We can enter any website directly from the game and listen to the things online
  • We can add music from our steam library

Now how we could listen to it:

  • Personal bumbox that we could carry around just like in Shadow Warrior spinoff
  • Tablet/ipod/walkman/wathever that we carry around just like mop and use with headphones at anytime so we can be always sure we can hear everything
  • Static speakers that we cannot pick up or move around that are spread out across the map

We either would be able to change music at any point with our pocket pilot or have to go to the panels similar to those where we end the game or we would click on the radio to change the music. The bigger panels on the map could also show the current website or just the name of the music.

Gameplay suggestions

I didn’t played all the maps so there is very small possibility that some of the things i suggest below area already in the game. Let’s hope that this isn’t the case. Ok now to the real meat. New tools that could be fun too use in new or even in old maps on new kinds of mess.

Vacuum cleaner – We could collect small things. We have to however change the bag sometimes because it could explode. We couldn’t collect some stuff because they could destroy the bag instantly (glass for example). But maybe it could be used only for pushing multiple things around instead of simply sucking them (bloody parts would still do mess). Or it could be used to suck the air which could be poisoned or just simply smelly. And we would have to use filters which we would have to refill when they run out. After that we could also use air freshener which would also run out eventually. To make things less easy we could have to move the container with bag separately from the handle which would suck stuff to the bag in the container. Also container could have electric cable that needs to be connected for the whole thing to work.

Magnetic cleaner – Used to pick up a lot of small metallic stuff. But makes us slower when we have much stuff. Also being close to bucket or other big metal things isn’t good idea. Maybe even metal walls could attract us when we have collected bigger amount of stuff.

Pressure washer – Used to clean hard to reach places. We would have to refill the water when it runs out. High pressure of the water makes the stuff break to smaller parts so using it especially on flesh garbage isn’t good idea. Also could be limited by the length of the electric cables. Or we would have to carry around the pump and after placing it on the fine spot we would then have to grab the handle. So basically we would have 2 things (or even 3 with electric cable) that would be connected and also we would have to refill one with water from time to time (same as Vacuum cleaner explained before).

Bucket of solvent – We would obtain it in a bucket just like the water. We would have to wet our mop first in it when we would like to remove some hard to clean stuff. Maybe some alien blood? Or some goo that is glued on the wall with parts of human body. When we get rid of the goo there is still flesh mess to take care off. Also we would have to clean our mop with water before we start cleaning. Bucket with water that had mop with solvent in it doesn’t cleans the mop from blood as effectively. So solvent is just another mess that we have to clean after we clean the harder sticky one.

Bucket of polishing liquid – Something similar but only used on glass or wooden floors after they are completely cleaned. Mixing it with blood makes stains bigger. Used to remove scratches and stains. Too much of it makes another stains.

Pruning scissors – Used to trimming the plants. After trimming, plants would leave a lot of mess.

Watering can with fertilizer – Used to make water plants. When we pour out it on the floor it makes stains.

Ultraviolet flashlight – Used to see otherwise invisible stains. Instead of flashlight it could be lamp that we could carry around (like we have now but without ultraviolet).

Organic mess – I would like to see things that we would have to kill first. For example plants that we would have to burn or poison first because it could grown on entire map. Killing it also makes a lot of mess. Also maybe rats?

Progression

Usually I am against progression in games. But sometimes it is fun and makes sense to put in. Imo we could have something in VCD too. Those tools I suggested before. Some of them could be exclusive to new maps just like shovel. But some of them would make it easier to play (Vacuum cleaner, Magnetic cleaner, Pressure washer) and those could be granted only after we completely beat the level or entire game. They wouldn’t be available from the start. So we still have a chance to experience the whole toilsomeness of cleaner job. But still we could make it more interesting on next playthroughs.

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