Editor’s Note: There are spoilers below.
By Desiree Bonilla
Florence, from Australian studio Mountains, is the most beautiful mobile game/interactive comic I have ever played. I say interactive comic because when you play Florence it does not feel like playing a game. It feels as if you’re just flipping through a comic and picking what to do or how to do it. The reason why I say it’s as if you are flipping through a comic book is because every time the scene changes the image slides to the left it feels as if you’re flipping a page of a book.
Inside this game from the maker of Monument Valley and published by Annapurna, you deal with the life of a 25 year old girl named Florence Yeoh. It starts off with Florence repeatedly hitting snooze on her alarm clock until she has to drag herself out of bed. On her way to work, she passes time by scrolling through social media. In this part, you are able to click whether you would like to re-post or heart the photo although nothing really happens since you are just trying to pass time to get to work. You are also able to help her organize numbers at work. A set of numbers will pop up and you will need to match to the correct ones. Throughout the story, you are able to play sets of “mini games” to continue the story. When Yeoh wakes up to brush her teeth, you must move the toothbrush side to side until the bar above is completely full signaling Yeoh’s teeth are clean.
Yeoh’s daily routine is repeated to signify how the life of a 25 year old is. But that changes one day when Yeoh is strolling through the park and hears this really enchanting noise. When this occurs, you must click the key notes so Florence can get closer and closer to the sound. Eventually, she finds a cellist named Krish. At first, she falls in love with his music. But as they continue to talk and go out, she ends up falling for him.
Now this is where the story changes a bit. For once scene, you play as Krish, who needs help cleaning up his room. All you have to do is click on the messes in the room and once you’re done Yeoh will walk in. Yeoh ends up finding a book on the floor. The book turns out to be an application for the school of music. So she starts to push Krish into applying. After that, they end up moving in together.
When Krish moves into Yeoh’s home, you can see that Yeoh and Krish are extremely happy together. But, serious spoiler alert, after a little argument in the grocery store things start to go downhill. Krish starts to seem unhappy with playing the cello and Yeoh looks extremely stressed.
A lot of arguments rise up and from that moment on life gets really emotional. Krish ends up moving out after their break up and there is this one scene where Yeoh is moving forward and Krish starts to disappear. It’s a sign of letting go. I’ll admit my heart did hurt seeing Yeoh let Krish go. But things started to brighten up. Yeoh found the one thing she loved to do was paint and started to sell her paintings in galleries.
In my opinion, this interactive comic is amazing. The way the story line goes is touching and the little mini games are what keep it entertaining. It just never gets boring. I highly recommend playing this game for its stunning design and captivating storyline.
Desiree Bonilla is a New York Videogame Critics Circle intern, part of our ongoing partnership with the Bronx’s DreamYard Prep School.