The muted colour palette, gentle visual curves, and subtle yet enveloping soundscape all come together to complete a package that is at once serene and alluring. One of the main things that struck me during my time with Burly Men at Sea was an absence of any fear or anxiety. There is no death that sends you back to the beginning of any traditional level structure or checkpoint, but instead an adventure that unfolds as you recline comfortably before your flatscreen, Siri Remote in one hand, and perhaps your poison of choice not too far out of reach from the other (mine was a balloon of brandy).
Now this is not to say that Brain&Brain’s quiet adventure is bland or boring in any way, but that the atmosphere conjured is more a childlike sense of wonder, and wanting to know what impossibilities lie in wait around the corner, as opposed to any threat in the way of completion.
Clicking and guiding your three burly, bearded adventurers from screen to screen, you’ll find yourself transported from one absurd, dreamlike encounter to another, all tied together by nods toward Scandinavian folklore. Each play-through will see only an hour or two of your time slip enjoyably by – ideal for a single, complete session. The first time you see the credits roll however, need not be the last, for the horizon has many more stories to tell.
On re-entering Brain&Brain’s world players will find old friends with new things to say, and I’d recommend hoisting sail and aiming your cursor again at the line between sky and sea.
Saying too much about the storybook scenes that will unfold would only spoil your own adventure, so we’ll leave the discoveries to you, readers and players. But as Winter draws near down in the southern hemisphere, Burly Men at Sea seems like the perfect, dreamlike accompaniment to some dim lighting, comfortable seating, and your Apple TV’s Siri Remote.
In A Nutshell:
Brain&Brain’s Burly Men at Sea offers lovers of point-and-click a storybook full of dreamlike adventures, setting sail via your Apple TV’s Siri Remote. Absurdity, wonder, and Nordic folklore collide in this enchanting experience.