The weekend that time forgot: The Curious Expedition is available to play until Monday

By Owen Faraday 28 Feb 2015 0
Edgar the pack mule has an astounding array of salty jokes. Edgar the pack mule has an astounding array of salty jokes.

As you are all contractually obligated to follow us on Twitter (it's in those iTunes terms & conditions you never read before agreeing to) it will be old news to you that The Curious Expedition is free to play on the web this weekend.

Now before you start clicking links from your iPad or Android tablet or Chumby -- this current pre-release alpha build of The Curious Expedition is a weighty HTML 5 monster that runs best on a desktop browser. I got it running on my iPad once but the incantations required are much too dark to share on a public forum such as this. So take a break from House of Cards and play it on your computer for a bit this weekend. If you like it (and I reckon you will) you can shell out a few bucks to get early access.

The Curious Expedition is a crackerjack of a game we've talked about a couple of times before: you take on the role of one of the great names of the 19th and 20th centuries like Nicola Tesla and Amelia Earhart and lead expeditions into randomly-generated (and increasingly more dangerous) jungles, testing the patience of the indigenous folks and avoiding wild animals to find lost treasures. It's actually even weirder than that: there's Toltec gold and valleys full of dinosaurs and a lot of other stuff that might have been mined from a drunk Jules Verne/Arthur Conan-Doyle spitballing session. The Curious Expedition will get a native tablet app edition once development wraps on the web-based game, German devs Maschinen-Mensch tell us.

It seems like the Game Mechanic of the Year for 2015 is going to be sanity: keeping your characters in touch with reality figures prominently in The Curious Expedition, as it does in Darkest Dungeon and Sunless Sea. Is that a sign of our growing preoccupation with mental health as a new generation of combat veterans reintegrates into civilian life? Or a murmur in our collective subconscious as the Great Old Ones awaken in the black depths of the Pacific? It's gotta be one of those two.

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