By Mario Brito Collado
It’s Climate Week, and the streets of Manhattan have seen tens of thousands of protesters. I thought of all this as I pondered a question: how can a videogame transmit the main idea of being an ecology-minded engineer, without enduring all the stressful parts of actually being one in real life? Green With Energy is a strategy offering that made this idea come to life. This minimalistic experience is about trying to put us into the role of an engineer, taking us to situations where we have to think about how to bring energy to the different types of levels through the game. The beauty of this is that from the beginning you are dealing with problems that an actual engineer has to deal with as well. There are many other games that tried to do this idea as well, but few of them are this outstanding.
First of all, the graphics have a minimalistic style that is very pleasant to experience take during tasks. There’s a term for this. It’s called “low poly.” It seems the developers are opting for this low polygon style because it gives the developers the opportunity to have more time to focus on creation aspects. Ultimately, this gives you agency, and, as a result, delivers a more refined product. In the same way, the graphics connect in a magnificent way with overall theme of Green With Energy. Combined with the chill music and the sound of rain of on some levels, I got a satisfying experience that I will probably remember long after completing the game.
The level design itself is amazing. You have different types of tools that the player will be unlocking while completing the levels. The objective is always clear and the player instantly knows what to do. The game also shows us many ways of getting energy, like the wind energy and mixing it in a great way with the gameplay. Having to combine the high voltage energy with the low voltage energy adds a challenge to completing the level successfully. This connects with the main idea of the game as well, which is to show how we can produce energy in ways that are that less destructive to the earth and, actually, help the environment.
Every single tool that the game offers is useful, and the levels can be completed in different ways depending on the person’s strategy. If you need many attempts to complete a level, Green with Energy has an instant reset if your attempt fails, making the experience a lot more fluid. At one point, I thought that it was impossible to implement all those elements in one level, and then I saw how the game handles to allow me to use all the tools that I was unlocking to complete it. I was amazed at how much I enjoyed it.
Getting into the narrative, this game does not overtly have one at all. The only characteristic that we know is that the main character is an engineer ,and that’s it. But I think that the developers knew that they did not need a traditional narrative to make this game a great one. That’s perfectly fine because while you are playing, you are actually creating your own narrative as you build. While I believe it would be better if the game could have a direct narrative apparent as I was completing the levels, it still makes me still feel the story I made: the strategy, the construction, the buildings, was a story in itself. This lack of narrative is not an actual problem because the game wants us to concentrate on the energy designs and how to complete levels.
Without question, this is an outstanding strategy game, one which handles in a magnificent way. It has incredible puzzles and gives you a myriad of tools that you unlock through the game. The graphics are pleasant to see, and they’re combined with excellent and relaxing music. Having to think as a real engineer was never this fun, and having ideas of how to make a sustainable energy system for a town or a couple houses is really satisfying. For all the reasons above, Green With Energy is a highly recommended game, especially you like strategy games.
A recent graduate of the Bronx’s Ellis Prep high school, Mario Brito is one of NYVGCC’s newest writing interns. He is attending Manhattan College full time.
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