Little Inferno
Gameplay 7
Graphics 7
Sound 7

While Little Inferno is not a game in the strictest sense of the word, it does provide a very interesting experience. There isn’t much of a challenge beyond finding the correct combination of things to burn, but the eerie story and polished visuals might just suck you in. Perfect for those cold winter evenings.

Gameplay: Simple but strangely relaxing.

Graphics: Stylish and polished.

Sound: Very eerie

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Little Inferno

Developer: Tomorrow Corporation | Publisher: Tomorrow Corporation | Release Date: 2012 | Genre: Adventure / Indie / Casual | Website: Official Website | Purchase: Steam

As anyone that has sat around a campfire can attest, there is something hypnotic about the flickering of flames. Little Inferno is a game that taps into that pyromaniac vein in all of us by providing a virtual fireplace and catalogs filled with stuff to burn. There are no monsters to defeat, bad guys to shoot or high scores to chase. There aren’t even any time limits and failure is pretty much impossible, so it is not surprising that the game was met with confusion upon its first release.

The game has you facing your “Little Inferno Entertainment Fireplace” with a small shelf below it from where you can drag and drop things into the hearth. New items to burn are ordered from a catalogue using cash you get from burning the previous items. The game has been called everything from a glorified screensaver to a pointless waste of time, but there is just something about it that can suck you in.

I was fortunate enough to play the game with the perfect conditions. It was raining outside and I was snug in front of my computer with the heat turned up high. This definitely added to the atmosphere and made the whole experience more enjoyable. The items that you can burn range from homage’s to other titles and products right down to some very surreal objects. Everything is well animated, slightly creepy and has all kinds of moving parts that dangle realistically as you plop it down in the fireplace. They all react differently when burned as well. Some toys will just stare at you in silent accusation as the flames consume them while others explode or even freak out and run around screaming. Eventually the realistic flames reduce everything to ash, leaving you with the cash to buy some more objects to burn.

You have to purchase everything in a catalog to unlock the next one, but latter ones require a set amount of combos before they become available. Combos are sets of two or three objects sharing some sort of link that are burned together. The game gives you the names of these combos which serve as clues to what you must burn.

There are ninety nine of those combos to discover ranging from the fairly obvious to the rather clever and very obscure. You don’t have to find all the combos to complete the game, but since the whole experience last for little more than three hours it would be a waste not to try.

Some objects and combos also earn you coupons which are vital for later in the game. Initially objects are delivered almost instantly, but once you reach the final catalog you are looking at waiting times of almost five minutes. Unless you want to sit staring into the flames for that long, you can use coupons to reduce the wait times. Your limited shelf can also be expanded using cash so that you have more things to burn while waiting for the new arrivals.

While ninety percent of your time in Little Inferno involves mindlessly burning stuff, there is also a story. This is conveyed through letters from your neighbor Sugar Plumps and occasional weather reports from the weather man floating above the city in his balloon. The game has a wonderfully eerie atmosphere which is helped by the brilliant soundtrack and unique art style. For a game that is created by only three people it definitely doesn’t disappoint in the audio and visual department. The creators were involved with titles such as World Of Goo as well as Henry Hatsworth in the Puzzling Adventure, so I guess it is no surprise.

Little Inferno is probably not a game for everyone and many people will fail to see the appeal. I quite enjoyed the sandbox style gameplay even though I understood the message that the game was trying to convey. It also has a very satisfying conclusion so it is worth sticking around to the end to see how it all pans out. The game is rather pricey for what you get but then again, what else is out there that allows you to burn stuffed animals, household products and even planets in your fireplace?

*Review originally published November 2013.

System Requirements

    • OS: Win 7, Vista and XP
    • Processor:1.5 Ghz
    • RAM: 1GB
    • Hard Drive: 200 MB
    • Video Card: You will need a graphics card that supports Shader Model 2.0 or greater and DirectX 9.0c.
    • OS: OSX 10.6 or later
    • Processor:1.5 Ghz
    • RAM: 1GB
    • Hard Drive: 200 MB
    • Video Card: You will need a graphics card that supports OpenGL 2.1 or greater.
    • Processor: 1.5Ghz CPU
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Hard Disk Space: 200 MB
    • Video Card: graphics card that supports OpenGL 2.1

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