Developer: Winglett Entertainment
Released: March 2020 (Demo)
Radical Relocation is an experimental physics-based puzzle game developed by Winglett Entertainment and published by Iceberg Interactive, in which you move your items and furniture from one house to another in the most radical way possible! Disappointed in the lack of moving companies, you strategically stack your belongings on top of your car and carefully drive them to your new abode while making sure they don’t fall. The game’s demo is available on itch.io and GameJolt and slated to release into early access soon. This review covers the three-level demo and may not be representative of the full game.
When you start Radical Relocation, you will be greeted by a EULA screen, an uncommon sight in indie games. Some of its restrictions include the inability to use cheating software like Cheat Engine, which is strange considering the game is singleplayer. Once you accept the EULA and start the game, you begin with the tutorial, which shows you how to stack your items, view the map and begin driving. Radical Relocation’s main gameplay is a fight against the laws of physics, chiefly inertia, and succeeding means constantly tweaking your driving style and stacking items in the most stable way possible. This makes the game either fun, stressful, or both, and the demo doesn’t offer much to get a general feel of the game.
The first level has you carry a suitcase on top of your car and driving to your destination a couple of meters in front of where you start. The second level (Level 3 in the full version) better displays the core gameplay with a reasonable number of items and a few turns to overcome. The last one (Level 8 in the full version) is a sudden difficulty spike as you are tasked with moving an entire bookshelf (with books), a basketball, two vases, a dog kennel, and a bonsai, in a map including many twists and turns. It might take you a lot of time to figure out the optimal placement of these items and how to navigate the town, though crashing can be quite a violent and amusing spectacle.
The demo suffers from a couple of issues that should be addressed in due time. The tutorial doesn’t show you how to move the camera, and the first item is off-screen (to move the camera, hold either right or middle mouse button). Another one is that levels don’t always restart automatically, in which case you should press R. The most problematic flaw is that during stacking, you can’t move items into other items, such as the basketball into the bookshelf or the dog kennel. However, when you begin driving, the items will try to enter others – I would love being able to do that before driving.
Radical Relocation uses a simple, flat and colorful art style for its visuals, which is effective for its humorous nature and for the gameplay itself. The demo contains one music track, which is played only at the main menu, meaning the game is mostly a silent affair apart from the engine, the ambiance and the crashing sounds, which can drone on and make the game less interesting.
I believe Radical Relocation can become an interesting and fun game to play, and it has the potential, with its wacky gameplay and premise. However, the demo shows that the game needs some general polish and at least two more levels to better showcase it. It should also make better use of item placement. With all that said, I’m looking forward to stacking even more obscene combinations of items in early access and the final version, with features such as boats and helicopters and a free roam mode!