Published on February 6th, 2017 | by Kyle V. Hiller0
A Normal Lost Phone
Reading between the lines takes intuition. If you’re not in tune, then you’ll have to be a tenacious investigator. Accidental Games’ A Normal Lost Phone has a story to tell, but it’s a nonlinear point and click adventure that thrusts you into someone else’s world. You’ve discovered a lost phone, and if you’re curious, you’ll unravel the touching, heartbreaking yet hopeful story of the phone’s owner Sam.
The game opens with the player discovering a lost phone. You’re presented with an interface that you can interact with. Check the phone’s emails, pictures, and sort through their music. The core of the story begins with the messages app, where you will find a long list of conversations. Apparently, it was Sam’s 18th birthday, and before long, the threads reveal Sam had been deeply dreading his 18th birthday. For what is the mystery that you’ll have to uncover.
The whole story isn’t revealed in the threads. You’ll have to dig through the information and the conversations to uncover hints for passwords into other apps in the phone. The answers aren’t apparent, making it laborious to retrace your steps if you aren’t paying much attention at first. You’ll have to reread messages, picking at minor details in conversations. Sam seems like he’s dropped the ball with some of his friendships, but there’s a reason why and it’s up to you to find out. It’s easy to sympathize with Sam, and I found myself wanting to know not just what happened, but why and what Sam plans to do going beyond his 18th birthday.
The interactive slice of life shapes from an angle that is hardly explored in media, particularly video games. The refreshing take doesn’t hold your hand, and to some, Sam’s dilemma might be obvious at first. A Normal Lost Phone is a novelty whose subject matter may leave many uncomfortable, especially the further you dig. It’s unapologetic, but not in any vulgar or crude way. A Normal Lost Phone’s narrative is graceful, but still–proceed with caution.
Fans of games like Cibele, Gone Home and Life is Strange will thoroughly enjoy this engaging narrative, which wraps up in about 3-4 hours.
Pick up the game on Steam or through the App Store and Google Play.