LAB RAT
Edge|December 2020
LAB RAT
Kine’s creator returns with a lockdown-inspired puzzler

Developer/publisher Chump Squad

Format PC

Origin US

Release Spring

Lockdown has been more productive for some than others. For Gwen Frey, it’s been something more – the inspiration behind her follow-up to last year’s wonderful Kine. Built on that game’s codebase, it’s a Sokoban-style puzzler which casts you as a human test subject, put through a series of challenges by a machine-learning algorithm. The play space is cramped, with the player character trapped within four walls, as two computer monitors loom large in the background – reflecting Frey’s own desk.

“I felt like I was going stir crazy,” Frey says. “I’m stuck here, and the only way I can communicate with anybody else is through this computer in front of me. I was like, ‘What is life like right now? It’s like being picked up and dangled like a rat in a cage.’ It all tumbled out of that feeling – the feeling of 2020.”

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December 2020