Available On: PC
Publisher: Finish Line Games
Developer: Finish Line Games
Genre: Adventure, Indie
Official Site: Maize
Release Date: December 1, 2016
Where To Buy It: Steam, HumbleStore, Gog
Maize is something truly unlike anything I have ever played before, and to be completely honest, it was super refreshing. And yes, the game is about sentient corn. Believe it or not, the sentient corn isn’t even the weirdest part about the game. Maize is a nice reminder that games don’t have to be deep and serious to provide a great experience. Maize has a great sense of humor and a wild story, and it’s probably one of the most fun games I have played this year.
As I previously stated, Maize is a first person adventure game that focuses on sentient corn. Why sentient corn, you may ask? Two scientists misunderstood a memo from the government and created the sentient corn. Your character wakes up in the middle of a corn field (go figure), and you must explore the farm to solve puzzles and open up new areas. You must discover who you are, the purpose behind the corn, and what happened to everyone who worked at the facility. The ending is something you could never guess, seriously; you could never guess how the game ends.
Maize creates a really a-maize-ing (that’s the only one, I promise!) environment with beautiful graphics and excellent use of music and sound design. When you are first dropped into the game, the isolated farmhouse and creepy music create a pretty spooky environment. Despite glitches here and there, the graphics continue to look really well done throughout the game. And it is pretty fun to hear how the soundtrack changes throughout the game as you discover the utter silliness this title will have in store for you.
The writing in Maize is done extremely well. The game has an incredible sense of humor that not only pokes fun at itself but about the genre in general. Your character will pick up incredibly heavy or large things for your inventory, and the game comments on how much space you much have or how strong your character is. I really love games that allow you to find information on your own and Maize definitely lets you discover the details of the story yourself. My playthrough was about 6 hours along and I attempted to be as thorough as possible because I loved all of the notes and collectibles. You really get a feel for the people in the world through insulting sticky notes, journal entries, and paintings you will discover throughout the research facility.
The characters you come across in Maize are just as charming and insulting as the rest of the game is, in the best way. My personal favorite would have to be Vladdy, a Russian teddy bear robot with a bad attitude. Aside from your little robot companion, the creators of Maize really spent their time creating memorable, unique characters.
My advice to anyone who is thinking of playing this game, do your best to pick up everything that you can. In true Grim Fandango style, if you don’t fully explore an area when you first visit it, you will be forced to return there to solve several of the game’s puzzles. The puzzles will really force you to think outside of the box and encourage you to try combinations you would have never thought about. When you pick up a few of the objects, you can’t help but wonder what in the world you would use them for and Maize never disappoints when it comes time to use these crazy items.
As much as I truly enjoyed Maize, if you’re searching for a true adventure title, this is not the game for you. This game provides a much-needed break from the sea of serious, deep stories in the market at the moment. If you go into the game knowing it’s more comedy than action, I think Maize is something everyone could enjoy. If you enjoy the title for what it is, a short comedic experience with some fabulous characters, challenging puzzles, and a unique story, then you are definitely going to have a good time.
All in all, Maize is a game that I hope no one overlooks. The game is constantly surprising you with its wit or a curveball with its gaming style. This game is just too much fun while being super thoughtful and puzzling. It is an experience truly unlike anything I have played in the past couple of years and I would totally recommend it to anyone who enjoys a good, colorful story!
- Gameplay: The controls are pretty basic, but the game definitely throws you some interesting curveballs. Very point and click-esque type of adventure.
- Graphics: As silly as it is, this game is beautiful to look at.
- Sound: The game’s soundtrack is done really well. The soundtrack really evolves as the story does. It moves from spooky to utterly ridiculous in the best ways.
- Presentation: Overall, the game comes together really well. While utterly ridiculous, Maize is a breath of fresh air in such a serious market.
- Good sense of humor
- Encourages you to think outside of the box
- Unique story, super refreshing
- Great graphics
- Easy to get lost
- Minor glitches
Shelby loves all things horror and anything even remotely nerdy. She has been playing games for as long as she can remember, and one of her first memories of gaming comes from playing Super Mario World on the SNES with her aunt. She has a real passion for literature and the indie gaming community.