And not just any finger. A finger wearing a top hat. Antbassador is a very silly, sometimes frustrating physics-based game from the makers of the equally ridiculous Octodad. As in the world’s — nay, universe’s — foremost caring father, secret octopus sim, Antbassador sees you masquerading as something you’re not for the greater good.
In this case, you’re a hand pretending to be a tiny person to seal a long-sought peace pact between finger people and ants — like you do. It is a tense time in this itsy bitsy realm, but a hopeful one.
Unlike Octodad, Antbassador is a side-scrolling game, but it’s still all about straining your digits to grasp at purposefully awkward controls while navigating a series of fairly mundane tasks. Basically, it’s “DON’T FUCK UP DON’T FUCK UP DON’T FUCK UP: The Game (Of The Movie Of Nathan Grayson’s Idiot Life),” and it’s mostly pretty great.
I say mostly because sometimes control-based mishaps are hilarious (squishing evil, maniacal-speech-spewing ant villains on purpose) but others trend toward obnoxious (squishing good, hat-wearing ants on accident). The controls are, as I said earlier, floaty on purpose, but that’s a double-edged sword. Or mandible or whatever. I haven’t studied insects since high school. Except when they land on my face, but that is The Bad Kind Of Studying.
Antbassador is also very short, but that’s to be expected. It was made as part of the recent Ludum Dare 30 game jam, and — to squeak under the competition’s ever-descending limbo pole — it was completed in 48 hours.
Still, Antbassador is a goofy good time while it lasts, and it’s free. One or two frustrating moments for a teeming anthill’s worth of chuckles? I’d say that’s a fair trade-off. Play it here.