“I pulled out box after box, setting them haphazardly around the room. My organization lacked something — like, say, organization …” – Richelle Mead
A Little to the Left is a casual puzzle game that has players sort, stack, and organize household items into pleasing arrangements while also keeping an eye out for a mischievous cat with an inclination for chaos!
Developer: Max Inferno
Released: 8th November 2022
Platforms: Windows, Mac
Available on: Steam
This game is being reviewed as part of the Indie Game Collective (IGC) showcase.
A Little to the Left is a series of 75 puzzles all centred on organisations, patterns and logic. There is a fantastic range of tasks to complete with examples including putting documents in size order, matching coloured pencils to their swatches and pruning a plant to be symmetrical. As an added bit of fun, there is a devilish cat on the lose who will sometimes appear to disrupt the player while they solve puzzles, moving items out of place and swiping things away. This happens infrequently enough that it does not get annoying and instead remains a cute and playful addition to the experience
There is a slight difficulty curve and some of the more challenging and complicated puzzles appear in the latter half of the game with some puzzles having up to three possible solutions. In keeping with the casual feel of the game, none of the puzzles are too tricky but just in case there is a hint system that involves using an eraser to reveal a solution underneath, this gives the player control over how much of the answer they see. Additionally, it is possible to skip puzzles, or ‘let it be’ and continue to progress in the game.
Narrative and Styling
There is no story in A Little to the Left but it does take the player on a journey through 5 different chapters: Home Sweet Home, Lost Recipe, Nitty Gritty, Inner Nature and Near Earth Organiser. Each chapter has a different theme that is reflected in the objects portrayed and the types of puzzles.
The game features delightful, hand-drawn artwork in vibrant pastel colour palettes with pointillism style shading and adorable crayon-like linework. The overall aesthetic is very easy on the eye and adds to the relaxing nature of the game. The music features woodwinds, piano and drums amongst other things used to a calming effect, though it is not too sedate and has a hint of liveliness to it. The soundtrack is well-implemented and fits nicely with the pace of the gameplay.
A Little to the Left is a charming experience that will take around 3-4 hours to complete though it lends itself to both extended and shorter play sessions and could easily be enjoyed as a chapter or even just a few levels at a time. Overall, it provides a nice level of challenge with satisfying puzzles whilst maintaining a cosy feel and the charming audio and visual elements accentuate the relaxing gameplay. This is an excellent example of a casual and family-friendly puzzle game, it was a pleasure to play and I highly recommend it to anyone that likes to organise things!
For more relaxing puzzle games, check out the following reviews:
Zodiacats – A Magical Game of Cat Puzzles and Astrology! – Karambola – A Free Surreal Point-and-Click Puzzle Adventure! – Moncage – Captivating New 3D Puzzle Game