If Twitter was less of a hellscape and had lo-fi beats playing in the background whenever you scrolled through your feed, the experience of it might be a little like Kind Words.
Kind Words is an indie game that, currently, is an exclusive to Humble Monthly subscribers. It's a simple premise: with the tune of lo-fi beats in the background, players flip through a series of anonymous letters from other players, seeking help.
This post has been republished to coincide with the game's release on Steam today.
The cute postal deer, who ferries your letters and responses back and forth, sets the tone for the game nicely. They're new in the job, and would like to know if you'd write them an encouraging note. Too easy, I thought.
— Alex Walker (@dippizuka) July 22, 2019
With that out of the way, it's onto the letters pile. Your inbox starts out empty, and so the first thing to do is start filtering through the anonymous "requests". Requests are questions, short stories, sometimes cries for help, and other players can filter through the list and write something nice back.
What makes Kind Words wholesome, at least for now, is that the letters in the queue are incredibly heartfelt. Here's just a short sample of the letters I came across:
- "I know I have friends who care about me, but right now I just feel really, really lonely"
- "Sup fam. <3 My best friend and fiancee (of 4 years) has just told me that, in essence, she doesn't love me anymore. She still wants to be best friends, as we're like family. But I don't know if it can work"
- "I used to fall in love with friends until it burnt me. Now I'm too afraid and force myself to not develop romantic feelings. It's been 5 years"
- "Some days I feel so useless. Why get up at all?"
And then there's other wholesome letters, asking whether or not you like the rain. One letter I saw wasn't really a letter, just a reminder that life can get better even when all seems lost, which was a nice touch. Tying all of this together is the nice soundtrack, which isn't that different from the kind of "chill beats" playlists on YouTube for studying, writing, and general productivity.
But like Twitter, Kind Words is only nice and chill because everyone's playing along. A major streamer's fanbase, 4chan or any like-minded trolls could throw that completely out the window; it's all dependent on how people want to play it, and the capacity of the developers to keep things under control. Because Kind Words is limited to Humble Monthly subscribers right now, the volume is easier to keep in check, but that could all with the larger Steam audience.
Kind Words is hitting its mark, for now. The developers have even rigged up a site where you can see if your letters have gotten replies, so you don't have to open the game (or so you have a link you can check while you're at school/uni/work). The game is part of the Humble Trove subscriber library, and is available on Steam as of today.