A Space for the Unbound – Review

A Space for the Unbound Featured Image
Release Date
January 19, 2023
Toge Productions
PS4, PS5, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, PC
Reviewed on
Review copy provided by
Toge Productions

Two years after its delay because of controversies, Mojiken’s pixel art game A Space for the Unbound has finally been released.

With Atma and Raya, explore the Indonesian pixel art scene. A Space for the Unbound, a narrative-driven game that explores adult issues like anxiety and despair, is set in a small village in the 1990s. A mysterious magical power suddenly threatens their existence, forcing them to search and investigate their community in an effort to uncover hidden secrets, confront the end of the world, and possibly learn more about one another.

The pace of the narrative initially drags but picks up after a few chapters. One of our favorite features of the game is the pop culture references, particularly those from well-known companies and video games. We like how skillfully Mojiken wrote the story and how much emphasis was placed on Indonesian culture. You will need to Google search for a ton of allusions to Indonesian culture, but it is unique and rarely used as a location for games. It is a good thing that trigger warnings were added because certain portions of the story are quite intense and not suitable for individuals who are easily triggered. Kudos to the team for also including mental health awareness not just in the intro but in the game itself.

I enjoy how the game mixes intriguing mechanics into its gameplay. The main mechanic is that you will need to dive into people’s mind and use it to your advantage, sort of like Inception. You will need to pay close attention as you read because there are important details in the dialogue that you must pick up on in order for the tale to move forward.

Although distinct, the game’s main mechanic can be compared to fetch quests in certain ways and has started to seem fairly repetitive. Furthermore, despite the fact that the game is a 2D platformer, the globe felt enormous due to the branching regions of the map that you can explore. There are also collectibles that added depth to how Indonesian culture is during the 90s era. And yes, you can also pet all cats in the game.

An amazing pixel art style was used to create each frame of the game. Its colorful visual style provided a stark contrast to the grimy tones of the story. The sound design of the game will make gamers seriously nostalgic for the 1990s by fusing 8-bit music with some modern tones. The music composition helps the game’s plot and general fantasy and mystery tones by giving you a sense of the gravity in certain of the game’s settings, a chef’s kiss for the indie game aficionados.

Two years after its initial demo, the performance of the game has vastly improved. It is also nice that even though the world is in pixel art there are choices for resolution as high as 4K and is extremely polished, something that is really common in indie games nowadays. It is also nice to see that Mojiken has exerted effort into bringing the game in different resolutions despite the art style being in pixels.

A Space for the Unbound is an easy recommendation for individuals who love strongly written games that pull at the heartstrings because of the game’s focus on powerful storytelling connected with the ideals of each character you will encounter. Sort of like something you can play during lazy Sunday evenings. Pixel art, amazing graphics, and fantasy video game drama are all combined in A Space for the Unbound. Though there are some slow-paced areas within the game story and some mechanics that can be repetitive in nature, It offers a unique experience as you explore a secretive, thrilling, and fascinating universe. It is fantastic that a small independent game developer like Mojiken has worked so hard to create a unique and heartwarming experience that can also pique the interest of players interested in learning more about Indonesian culture.

A Space for the Unbound Featured Image
A Space for the Unbound – Review
Score Definition
We tell you, it's a good game! It's not average! It might have some problems here and there, but you must admit it is a "Good" game.
Uniquely crafted story
Beautifully drawn pixel art style
Great music
Slow paced story
Repetitive mechanics