Florence (2018) is a puzzle game that tells the story of a relationship. It follows the usual stages of loneliness, meeting, dating, falling for and moving in with another person. At first, the puzzle interactions seem trivial and the game doesn’t change depending on how well we do. But each puzzle is cleverly designed to reflect the story. Sometimes easy, when the relationship is going well; sometimes almost impossible, when the couple is struggling. These interactions transform the emotional quality of the game and implicate us in what unfolds. It’s hand-drawn and full of whimsy but powerfully clears emotional space to consider the commitments, choices and priorities of relationships in our lives. Our examiner, Andy Robertson, first checked Florence 4 years ago. It was re-examined by Jo Robertson and updated 5 weeks ago.
9+ year-olds usually have the required skill to enjoy this game. It's a slow game (that's almost not a game). You need to have the skill of interpreting what's happening on the screen and relating that to the story. Not so much so you can progress, but so the emotions of the game make sense.
Written by parents for parents, the database complements the in-depth discussion about video game addiction, violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. We are an editorially independent, free resource without adverts that is supported by partnerships.