Did Finish – Journey

Real-time scarf platforming!

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The first time I got to the end of Journey I was mystified. How could anyone like this? I felt like I had just spent my time with an interactive sound track. To some extent I still feel the same now, but my views have slightly shifted in Journey’s favor.

If I had played Journey before Proteus I am sure it would have left more of an impact. I came to Journey expecting a seamless open world as I made my way to wherever I was going. To my surprise I found Journey to be a liner story adventure that doesn’t let you off the rails.

journey 1I felt less like I was on a Journey and more like I was walking down corridors. Journey is not a game. It contains lite game elements, but, for the most part, all you do is hold the left thumb stick forward until you see the end. I know this for a fact because I watched my four year old play the entire journey.

That’s not a bad thing. As an experience goes Journey can take you through some highs and lows. The first three times I experienced it were not that great. It’s broken multiplayer system kept paring me with people who didn’t have time for someone who didn’t know every nook and cranny of the world. As I looked around my fellow traveler would just move on.

Not letting you go on this walk a bout with someone on your PSN friends list is an issue I have with the game. I am guessing this is to eliminate jokes via voice chat so you don’t interrupt the soundtrack. The main vehicle for steering your emotional reaction.

I didn’t have a good reason for replaying Journey other than I wanted to collect all the scarf upgrades. Because honestly, that is the only thing here that you can call gameplay.

journey 2It was my fourth time in that I was paired with someone who wanted to play Journey. When I went off exploring they followed, soon they understood what I was doing and I was treated to a complete tour of everything the game had to offer. We traveled from the first moment you can meet someone to the final moment in the experience. This person showed me what the best part of Journey is. The role I now play when I play. A guide in a glowing white robe.

Journey finally clicked for me. The feeling of showing someone the world and watching them chirp excitedly when you show them the Ancestor for the first time is awesome!

I did something I have never done on PSN after my nameless guide helped me. I sent a thank you message. I felt in this situation it was necessary..I got a similar message in return. That felt good.

I have some issues with how the game ends –I don’t think it’s very good. I just may be (probably is) me, but I think the ending is a betrayal on the rest of the game.

If you are looking for an open world to explore, Journey is not that. If you are looking for an hour long audio visual experience, Journey is that. So it all comes down to what you are looking for. I have played games on the PC that do what Journey is trying to do — but better. So it’s emotional weight was lost on me. It’s a good distraction from your annualized first person shooter… You know what, yeah, go ahead and play it. I just hope you get paired with someone who cares.

Did you take the surreal trip? Leave a comment below, or hit me up on twitter and tell me about it. Don’t forget to join the Did Not Finish Facebook page. Also, feel free to Email me. If you are on Raptr  look me up.

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About Donald Conrad

Donald Conrad is an avid father and a dedicated gamer -- or maybe that's the other way around. He loves his games, and he loves his family, and he's pretty sure he loves sleep, even if he doesn't remember what it was like. Follow his life confusion on Twitter @ConManEd