January 3rd 2022: Helping
A downloadable project
Format: This game can be physical, digital, or take place in real space.
A Christmas tree has just been removed from a living room. You are packing away decorations, while two children are helping to clean up the residual pine needles. The children have different tools which sometimes makes this easier, and sometimes more complicated. Despite all efforts, the children's efforts are causing you to feel stressed.
As a player, you must manage your level of stress, otherwise you will become frustrated with the children, and the task will become harder to complete. There are three ways your stress level can increase:
1) As the children clean up the pine needles, they leave a small amount in their wake. You stress level will gradually rise over time if you do not intervene.
2) You can help guide each child for a small amount of time, reducing the needles they leave behind them. If you do this for too long, this becomes micromanaging, which then negatively impacts your stress level.
3) You can focus on your task, and leave the children to it. If left for too long, the children will then become distracted or unfocussed, which spreads more needles.
You can leave the room to reset your stress level, but doing so will cause you to temporarily lose the ability to control what is happening in the room. As such, it is randomly determined if the state of the needles will be better or worse upon your return. To be fair to the player - since the analogue here is the reduction of their stress level, the state of the room should better in most cases. The desired effect is to leave players wondering if their presence actually helped or hindered the cleaning process to begin with.
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