House House’s Untitled Goose Game took the industry by storm when it was released back in September. This indie combines stealth and puzzle elements to create an experience that puts its own creative spin on both genres. Untitled Goose Game’s biggest victory is how it balances and plays into these genres.
As light-hearted and silly as it appears on the surface, Untitled Goose Game is a stealth game through and through. You’re constantly forced to hide and take cover from the village people, crouch to sneak around, and use sound to manipulate NPC behavior. This segues into the excellent marriage of the stealth and puzzle elements at work.
Untitled Goose Game gives you a list of objectives for every area of the village. Not all of them are required to move onto the next area, but they do open up more gameplay options. There’s an impressive number of items in any given area that you can pick up or drag around. Simply playing around with them can unveil new ways to solve puzzles. I remember carrying around a walkie talkie and honking into it to transmit a signal to another walkie talkie across a field. Doing so distracted a shopkeeper long enough for me to swipe some groceries and shuffle off. Scenarios like these perfectly illustrate the appeal of Untitled Goose Game.
A large share of Untitled Goose Game’s appeal comes from the world itself. Honking your way through the village and disrupting the peaceful lives of its civilians is an experience on its own. Even when I was stumped on a puzzle. I found plenty of joy in causing the NPC’s to fall, break something, or argue with each other.
House House’s Untitled Goose Game is a funny and easygoing experience that also manages to expertly weave together stealth and puzzle elements. The pesky goose honks victoriously in celebration of taking home the Shacknews award for best indie game of 2019.