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The Beginner's Guide

Developer / Publisher: Everything Unlimited
01 October 2015
The Beginner's Guide - cover art
Glitchwave rating
3.80 / 5.0
0.5
5.0
 
 
638 Ratings / 6 Reviews
#348 All-time
#7 for 2015
The narrator attempts to understand the nature of an indie game developer he met at a game jam by exploring the games he made.
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this game is interesting in that the first time I played it, I thought it was the best thing i'd ever seen, and the second time I thought it was the worst. the concept and curiosity (is davey really who he says he is?) of it is really intriguing, but at the end of the day the actual gameplay is just a bunch of basic source maps, and you have to wait for davey to shut the hell up to progress any further. the limited options of what you can do or say add to the experience, however. and the ending is beautiful. maybe i'm just an impatient person.
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bugsbunny100 2022-01-28T02:50:04Z
2022-01-28T02:50:04Z
2.5
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A postmodern masterpiece
A lot of people like to throw around the word "pretentious" when talking about this game, and I don't agree with that assessment at all. Because pretentiousness implies a low level of quality or talent on display. The Beginner's Guide however, is one of the most brilliantly written narratives in gaming. If you don't believe me just go watch the Innuendo Studios video on it.

This game is one of very few pieces of media that I would say completely expanded my horizons on what media can be and how it can make you feel. I don't just cry when I play this, I sob, I weep, I bawl my eyes out. Like Davey talking about Coda, I just can't help myself.

If you aren't a complete idiot who actually likes art that is expressive and thought-provoking, please go play this.
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Logamuffin 2021-09-05T03:48:50Z
2021-09-05T03:48:50Z
5.0
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Initially I liked this, but after thinking about it more it's just self-indulgent melancholy porn whining about... people trying to interpret the intentions behind the creation of art? Sure, projection is a thing, that doesn't mean it's a thing in every case of trying to divine someone else's intentions ever. Lmfao people will eat up anything if it has the superficial appearance of being deep through abstractness, unconventionality, and being "postmodern" (lmfao) I guess. This game is pretentious, unsubtle garbage. And no it's not because it's a walking sim. The Stanley Parable was made by the same person and is good (if similarly unsubtle, though it works to its benefit there), as is What Remains of Edith Finch and Paratopic and probably plenty of other walking sims. Play like, Yume Nikki if you want a weird exploration game/walking sim that isn't as self-indulgent.
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gamer_patrick_ 2021-07-08T08:25:51Z
2021-07-08T08:25:51Z
0.5
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One of the only works of art ever made that perfectly encapsulates the despair and self-hatred that an abusive relationship does to the mind.
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yeule 2017-07-21T17:13:00Z
2017-07-21T17:13:00Z
4.0
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Debates about this being a game or not put aside, this is a lazy piece of media.

I found the narration to be really annoying, and the levels had very little effort thrown into them. If you go to gamejolt right now and browse the free unity games, you'll find levels with much more content. Sometimes the game will tell you that the level you're looking at is so weird or strange. However, again, gamejolt fan-made games feel like they were created under the influence of LSD. When mindbending games like Antichamber exist, or metagames such as The Stanley Parable, there's not much excuse to how little is here. Even $5 is far too much for this.

On top of that, the story wasn't really believable. It feels like the equivalent of showing me a completely blue canvas and explaining why it's so ground-breaking and emotional. The main character is so unlikable, as part of the story actually is that his interpretations of the levels are off-base entirely. So essentially we're just listening to a guy rant about his emotions while being subjected to unrelated unity demos. This is the worst of all the "walking simulators".
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nospr 2016-06-14T20:36:12Z
2016-06-14T20:36:12Z
1.0
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When I play video games, I'm trying to get something out of it. This something doesn't need to be profound, a fun afternoon doing crazy shit on a computer screen can more than suffice as something. I don't mind a bit of commentary even, in fact when it's placed tactfully (see: the Silent Hill franchise at its best, MGS2, The Stanley Parable), it's really engaging and often enhances the game for me. This game pours it on heavy, but in a pretty shallow way, and all the while doesn't really engage me ever. It's just a long sequence of me playing a bunch of unfinished levels of games made by a guy who is depressed. I feel for this "Coda" dude, but I just don't...care? At least not enough to literally play it out in a game. I'm literally walking in a straight line most of the time in this game and hearing the narrator tell me about the isolated nature of creating, video games at least. That sucks, and as a music producer and artist myself I do understand that sentiment very well, but that's just sort of how it is. I don't know if I need a game dedicated to this phenomenon to tell me it.

Moreover, I personally just don't have enough invested in the process of, and culture around, developing video games for me to care. I certainly appreciate them, and definitely think that they're arduous products of ambition, creativity, technical knowledge, and pure hard work. But...that's about it. I don't really think about how the developer feels because I just personally don't care that much. We all go to work, we all have our shit to do, and if making video games is your hustle, or even a hobby like this Coda person's presumably was, then so be it. Especially in a field as idealistic as game development. You could be doing much shittier work than game development.

I think the story of this game would have been more interesting as a documentary, maybe. But as a game it's honestly just mundane and pretentious. You're essentially shelling out money (albeit a small amount) to play a bunch of incredibly short and massively unfinished levels of games that never came into fruition while a guy waxes philosophical about gaming over it. That's just...not fun, to me. I don't get much out of it. I think I understand how hard game development and finding inspiration can be after playing this, but I also know that I don't really care that much afterwards. In a world where literally anything else is fucking people's lives up, how lonely game design can be really isn't on my priority list of issues we need to address, or issues I want to understand. Sorry.
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TooBrokeToCare 2018-11-02T18:37:13Z
2018-11-02T18:37:13Z
0.5
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Catalog

Earworms The Beginner's Guide 2022-08-12T16:46:24Z
2022-08-12T16:46:24Z
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
bleakage The Beginner's Guide 2022-08-12T10:54:35Z
2022-08-12T10:54:35Z
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Rodrigo_Conroy The Beginner's Guide 2022-08-08T23:37:17Z
2022-08-08T23:37:17Z
3.5
1
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
grizzlemaster The Beginner's Guide 2022-08-08T04:21:53Z
Windows / Mac / Linux/Unix
2022-08-08T04:21:53Z
4.0
1
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
jollermcawesome The Beginner's Guide 2022-08-06T01:51:13Z
2022-08-06T01:51:13Z
10
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
roaft The Beginner's Guide 2022-08-05T08:44:39Z
2022-08-05T08:44:39Z
5.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Eingya_ The Beginner's Guide 2022-08-03T14:00:56Z
2022-08-03T14:00:56Z
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Meljang The Beginner's Guide 2022-08-01T09:29:04Z
2022-08-01T09:29:04Z
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
IsItSomeoneNew The Beginner's Guide 2022-07-31T02:58:14Z
2022-07-31T02:58:14Z
5.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
noahjohnson1810 The Beginner's Guide 2022-07-28T20:25:32Z
2022-07-28T20:25:32Z
4.5
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
renganoid The Beginner's Guide 2022-07-23T12:49:57Z
2022-07-23T12:49:57Z
4.5
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
n2existance The Beginner's Guide 2022-07-22T05:47:38Z
2022-07-22T05:47:38Z
3.5
1
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
low 7
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  • Previous comments (15) Loading...
  • ParchedPinemarten 2021-11-15 22:07:28.730654+00
    i'm a sucker for fourth-wall-breaking games, so naturally i enjoyed playing this; it was a fun experience. however, it could have been much better. at times, it just feels overly pretentious and almost forces the interpretation of the narrative onto the player towards the end. "show, don't tell" is something the creator needed to utilise. at various times throughout the game, when you think you might be piecing it together, or developing a feeling for the material, the narrator suddenly blurts out how he's feeling. it ruins a lot for me.

    still worth playing/revisiting.
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  • violetinreal 2022-02-10 02:01:32.087347+00
    ^ lol this guy said "pretentious"
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  • Tintin_au_Congo 2022-02-20 16:51:25.537709+00
    It's funny how many people didn't understand this game (including me after my first playthrough). It is actually super straightforward and kind of the opposite of pretentiousness. If you need that blatant hint: the narrator is not Davey or just play these 2 hours again.
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  • Teeba 2022-05-06 13:26:25.946828+00
    I'm sad I can't experience this for the first time again
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  • Bowsette 2022-06-30 19:18:11.702242+00
    What a depressing message. How am I supposed to live after my death if not through my work? If people can't know me through my work, how am I supposed to cheat death?
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