Living in the golden age of indies means we’re frequently given the chance to visit sweeping, fantastical faraway places, or those set in the far future, but also settings much closer to home – sometimes even a little too close. Mosaic is the perfect example of a game that uses this conceit to great effect, dropping you within a world not unfamiliar to ours to explore deeper themes relating to anxiety, depression and the general monotony of everyday life. While likely not to everyone’s tastes, this short adventure had us gripped from beginning to end.
One of the first things you notice about Mosaic is just how distinctive its art style is. Set in a brutalist world where people act like drones simply going to and from their day jobs, the polygonal look and grey colour palette merge well to help convey the sense that you and everyone else are merely cogs in a capitalist machine. This isn’t to say that the locations you’re required to explore ever become repetitive, just that they share the same oppressive tone Mosaic doubles down on. Don’t be fooled by the Inside-like aesthetic, however, the game deals with far more harrowing subject matter – especially for players old enough to know the regular rhythm of wake up, work, sleep, repeat.
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