Drowning in Problems: Notch's surprisingly moving text game


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The subject matter and approach aren’t terribly surprising, considering the existential conversation shown as a scrolling text after you defeat “The End” in Minecraft.

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I enjoyed that.

Hm, it seems that I can click on ‘play’, ‘learn,’ and ‘make love’ indefinitely as long as I scrupulously avoid working or growing up.


I remember when it seemed that way


Existential conversation? More like sophomore poetry. I have always thought of it as a punishment for killing the dragon.


Does anyone have recommendations (or a link to someone else’s roundup) of more games like this? I am a sucker for this kind of simple text game (we don’t want to discuss how many hours were wasted in Candy Box and Candy Box 2) but in my search for more, I am often waylaid by old school “Type N for north, E for…” type things which don’t appeal to me at all.

Rock, Paper, Shotgun does a roundup of free games once a week, often have things like this.


They used to list a lot of those at http://freeindiegam.es, although I think they’ve stopped updating that now.

Have you played the one where you start by gathering wood for your fire? Or, oh god, Horse Master. Horse Master is the best, just… the best. Amazing.


Seriously. The best.


I hope Notch is doing alright.

It’s an existential little game, and it can hit you pretty hard if you’re coming into already in a certain state of mind…

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Wow–horse master is both exactly what I was looking for and simultaneously an experience I am going to have to shower to forget. (I played twice–can one win the competition?) I think I know the one you mean with the wood gathering; I loved that so much!

Yes, you can win the competition.

Definitely Alter Ego.

I have my very own text game here: http://gamejolt.com/games/other/continuity/18582/

Not a text game, but Every Day the Same Dream has similar themes.


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A Dark Room is very similar in gameplay, without the existential angst:

I don’t think of myself as interested in that kind of game, but it really trapped me for several days. (Fortunately, the game can eventually play itself for much of the time in a background tab, and you go back to it when you want to.)

I won Horse Master, but I suspect losing might feel better, god that messed with my expectations

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Oh… well I didn’t need to feel good about life anyway.

I just played…very surreal. And I am proud to say: I Am A Horse Master!

(Not sure exactly how I did it: balance the stats and share the food equally?)

Weird. Fun.

I interpreted this as a deconstruction of society’s tendency towards end-directed thinking. It’s like life, minus life. I bet some of those “projects” and “memories” were actually quite fulfilling and worthwhile had only they not been seen as a means to an end; boxes to tick off on your way to the grave. Life is not a means to an end.

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