Lo-Fi 'Stranger Things' Game Feels Like a Real '80s Product
If you want to mess around with the kind of computer game Mike Wheeler would totally be playing in his 1980s basement, look no further — there’s a point-and-click Stranger Things adventure game online.
Like the show, the game is a “small labor of love,” according to it’s Infamous Quests programmers Steven Alexander, James Mulvale, and Jon Taylor-Stoll. It combines the relatively flat animation of Labyrinth: The Computer Game with the vibe of the King’s Quest series, melding retro-gaming and simple computer adventures into one. Naturally, we dove right into the game, which you can play or download right here.
True to its 8-bit-esque feeling, it isn’t a super complicated game. Instead, it’s a great way to relieve 10 minutes of midday boredom. Most of the game’s enjoyment comes from dragging Alcoholic, Police Chief with a Heart of Gold Hopper through the woods in the middle of the night while searching for clues about Will Byers’ disappearance, but there aren’t really any surprises in store. There’s no Demogorgon hiding in the shadows and no bear traps, courtesy of Nancy and Jonathan.
Some of what might read as unrealistic character stuff feels appropriate for the kind of game this is supposed to be emulating. Finding Mr. Clarke and asking him, “Nice night, eh?” gets you a response of, “It’d be better if I was at home, watching The Thing on VHS with my girlfriend!” Sure, it’s cute and all, but there’s no way in Hell Cool Teacher Mr. Clarke would rather be at home when one of his unabashedly favorite students is missing. But accurate characterization isn’t the goal, here. Just like most other games of its kind (see: just about any adventure game by LucasArts) things can be dragged out for as long as you want: make small talk with Mr. Clarke, demand that Powell and Callahan “Stand up straight; act professionally, you two,” click on the same rock ten times and so-on.
The correct answers to take you to the next step are typically pretty obvious in the case of Infamous Quests’ Stranger Things one-off.
(Spoilers: it’s not asking over and over again whether or not Powell and Callahan think Flo makes good coffee).