Game Review: Unravel stays tied to a single thread

There’s something to be said for focus. Too many games, good and bad, fall over themselves in a rush to provide us with as many flavors as possible, cramming in half-baked ideas just to prolong running times and expand the experience. Sometimes this works; other times, it results in a chaotic mess of contradictory impulses, a flow interrupted by breakers every 10 feet.

Unravel does not suffer from this problem. Everything you need to know is introduced in the first five minutes, every level moves in a straight line from beginning to end, and the only collectibles are unobtrusive and easily ignored. Simplicity is Unravels defining characteristic, from its puzzles to its aesthetic to its central narrative—a melancholic, ambiguous look back at the life of a family. There are a few modest surprises, but the fundamentals never change. It’s a striking design choice, which, in its …

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