In my recent review of Satellite Reign, I mentioned a shareware/demo disc I obtained as a child. In a different, but similar compilation, I ran across a point-and-click adventure game called The Neverhood. In a time when adventure games were fairly plentiful, Neverhood distinguished itself by being entirely hand-animated in the clay medium. It was pretty damn nifty; sitting there on my 90’s computer, controlling clay characters and watching wacky clay puzzles unfold on my computer screen. Besides the clay novelty, it was a good, entertaining, and funny adventure game.
Neverhood never really got the credit it deserved, and thanks to a waning adventure game market, it was resigned to a fair amount of obscurity. Thankfully, the game’s creators never hung up their hats and stayed in the game long enough to make a spiritual successor; one of the many types of games that makes the modern indie market a wonderful thing. It’s made ever more wonderful when veteran members of Shiny Entertainment are involved (there’s that company again). Enter Armikrog.
Doing everything in clay back in the 90’s was impressive and original in that it was unexpected to use such an analog animation technique for digital entertainment. Dare I say that it’s just as interesting, if not more so, in 2015 – the midpoint of a decade stuffed to the gills with CG animation features. Armikrog sticks to its roots, and nearly all assets are hand-created with flesh and blood, or should I say earth and clay.
Also worth noting is the voice cast, which includes Jon Heder of Napoleon Dynamite fame, and Michael J. Nelson from freakin’ MST3K! If you don’t know what MST3K is, please, stop reading this and go culture yourself immediately.