Gary’s the man, man. Who’s Gary? You’re Gary. What, your name is not Gary? It is in Level 22, an office stealth game by Level 22.
I said in my previous coverage of this game that I was really digging its quirky office humor, the artstyle and the music.
Not much has changed since then, to be honest. The more I played this charming little stealther, the more I was swooned by its inexplicable appeal. It may be that I dread office work, and that I love Ricky Gervais. It may be that the level design is great. It may be that the enemies are well thought out and realistic.
I think, it really comes down to the fact that the game is good.
It Level 22, you play as Gary, an office worker who is having none of this “get in time to increase productivity” nonsense. You’ll get there when you get there. But you have your buddy on the phone giving you clues (kind of like Cheech and Chong but with a bit more coordination), because you don’t want to get caught.
The artstyle is a very modern take on pixel art, and I like it. I was getting a bit jaded on 8-bit this and that of late, so Moving Player’s approach to simplistic graphics suit me to a T.
The music is engaging, but can get repetitive. I get where it’s coming from, and it works within the scheme of the game. But I’m the kind of guy who likes to listen to game soundtracks while working on other stuff, and I don’t think the music on Gary’s Misadventures quite makes the cut for that.
As with any stealth game, Level 22’s make-it-or-break-it is the level and enemy design, and moving player does not disappoint. From sleeping coworkers to getting around Nosy Nancy by pulling out a newspaper and reading it, it’s the plausibility of using these decoy strategies that won me over. Sleeping coworkers are also very real, as I can attest from that time I found a friend of mine sleeping in the bathtub of the house we were painting (it wasn’t ours).
All in all, Gary was a fun escape from… well, not reality. It was more of a “I wish I could have done that”. And much like found footage films, it’s the suspension of belief, the “it may just be possible” that takes this game from “good” to “I had a ton of fun with it”.
It doesn’t have that much replay value, and the music could be better, but it’s a seven-buck trip to the 22nd floor that’s definitely worth taking.
- Title: Level 22
- Publisher: Moving Player
- Developer: Moving Player
- Format: PSN Download
- Memory Card Space Needed: 212Mb