“Unpacking” relaxes players through calming aesthetics


Courtesy Steam

“Unpacking” allows players to enter a calm environment through its gameplay

Joceline Giron, Assistant Online Editor

Unpacking” is a lovely puzzle/home decorator game that follows the story of a girl as she goes through life, using a retro pixel art style. 

Developed by Witch Beam and released in Nov. 2021, the game has recently gained traction for its unique gameplay in contrast with more mainstream video games on the market. Most games at that time were either first-person games like “Resident Evil: Village” or action-adventure games like “It Takes Two”. 

The gameplay consists of the player unpacking the character’s belongings from boxes as she moves into a certain stage in her life. Players can go through every box and see little details about the character as she grows up, getting a sense of her interests and personality. After you have placed every item that was in the boxes, the game tells you if the item is in the correct spots before you are able to move to the next of the eight stages. 

The gameplay is a bit short depending on how quickly and often you play the game. It’s fairly simple for people who have never played and the controls are very easy to use. The game also allows multiple people to play because there are three different books that save each player’s gameplay. 

One of the most beautiful details of the video game is the art style, which is similar to pixel art of the 90s, which is nostalgic to players who may have grown up with that type of art style. The items in the game are created with life-like detail making the quality of the game  very clear. 

The game’s soundtrack, by Jeff van Dyck, is both gleeful and serene. He uses a variety of instruments like heavy guitar, ukulele and drums to add to the ambiance. The strumming of the guitar is lulling for players who want some calm.  

The game is usually played on the computer but can also be played on the Nintendo Switch and Xbox One. There are no external devices needed to play the game. It is currently $19.99 on all gaming platforms.

The calm playthrough is worthwhile for even the occasional video game player. This unique game is for everyone, whether you’re a casual  or a hardcore gamer.