bluish-brownish-greenish-eyes: toastoat: lizziegoneastray: puddingtonbear: I’m sure this was…





I’m sure this was meant to be a joke, but I actually think this is a great summary of why the untitled goose game is so therapeutic. I don’t know about you guys, but somewhere along the way in the course of learning to be a good person, I internalized the idea that if I ever caused problems for other people in any way, no matter how small or insignificant, that meant I was failing at being the best person I could be. Let me say that again: inconveniencing other people, even in minor ways, meant I was failing. It meant I wasn’t Good, and oh, how I have always longed to be Good. I know I’m not the only one; that’s why this poem resonates so deeply with so many people. Just, huge swathes of the population grew up believing that our job on this earth was to be small and subservient and avoid getting in the way, and the idea that maybe we don’t have to always do that is genuinely revolutionary.

And then there comes this game where the entire point is to be as horrible and irritating as humanly (goosely?) possible. The game creates to-do lists based on annoying the human residents of the town; you are rewarded for making a nuisance of yourself in entertaining ways. These to-do lists are filled with 100% pointless tasks that don’t put any good into the world and exist solely to entertain the player, and the only way to advance in the game is to complete them. The game prioritizes the goose’s interests, and therefore the player’s, over absolutely everything else, and requires that the player do the same even when there isn’t a “good reason” to. Like, do I need to make that guy spit out his tea? No. But I’m going to anyway because it’s on my to-do list and it’s funny. I don’t think anything else in the world has encouraged me to put myself first like that.

And the other thing is, this game demonstrates that even if you make it your life’s mission to be as much of a minor nuisance to those around you as humanly possible, at the end of the day, it’s going to be alright. The woman will reset the bell. The man will pour himself another cup of tea. Life will go on for the entire village, even with an annoying goose running around ruining everybody’s day. And like, as frustrated as the villagers get, none of them are ever really sincerely mad at you. They yell sometimes, and they’ll chase you down to get their stuff back, but then once they’ve restored their personal equilibrium, they pretty much just leave you alone to go about your Important Goose Business. You’re a goose, after all. Geese being annoying is, at the end of the day, part of what reassures us that the world is still turning on its axis as it should.

I’m not saying that we should all go out and start messing with each other for no reason. What I am saying is that maybe it’s not such a huge deal if we annoy each other a little bit now and again, in the course of going about our own days. Maybe it doesn’t make us bad people if we are occasionally inconvenient for those around us. For a lot of folks that may seem obvious, but for some of us, it’s really not.

I don’t know if any of this was intentional on the part of the developers, and I almost think it’s better if it wasn’t. But when I play this game, I get three lessons out of it: put yourself first; don’t sweat the small stuff; and, most importantly, you do not have to be Good. It is okay to sometimes, instead, be Goose.

H o n c

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