Review: Jerrys Game

Rick and Morty Presents Jerry’s Game
Developer: Big Pixel Studios
Publisher: [adult swim]

It is Monday the 15th of August 2016 and I am very tired but unable to go to sleep.
I’m in a room I can’t leave and internet access varies drastically minute to minute.
Recently on my phone I have mostly been playing Pokémon Go but as I can’t walk around that is kind of pointless. I’m too tired to really concentrate on anything so while I have a solid wifi connection I download Jerry’s Game.

The game itself is simple enough there are balloons each time you click one it pops and you get a point. There is a timer constantly going down but clicking on a balloon fills it completely eliminating any real challenge. The only real fear of losing comes from the black balloons with the skull and crossbones on them. One click of them and it is game over.

With my tired brain I happily click on the balloons, with each new milestones tiny celebrations happen and either Rick or Morty appear and give me encouragement to continue.
I don’t know if there is any sound or if Rick speaks when he appears. My phone is silent the balloons help me not focus on the fans and lights in the room.
Every milestone I hit also gets me bonus balloons making it easier to hit the next. Each bonus bigger than the last encouraging Jerry … me to continue onward.

I am constantly encouraged to keep clicking the balloons. For I am Jerry and this simple task is enough for me now. Each balloon it’s only little victory, every milestone a triumph. The little parades help tell me i’m doing well even if Rick and Morty’s encouragement feels a little hollow. I am achieving something. This is my game and I will click the most balloons. The timer cannot stop me and I will not be fooled by the black balloon.

Though I am not Jerry at the moment it helps to be him. The balloons occupy a tired brain and I see how this game could easily have been made by Rick to distract Jerry for an hour while he takes Morty on an adventure. Jerry would probably keep playing even after figuring this out. It is the perfect game for Jerry.

For a short time it’s the perfect game for me too. For fifteen minutes it distracted me allowed me to think of balloons and weird little scenarios of Rick trapping Jerry. Placing me in Jerry’s mind while I ignore where I really am.

I however cannot continue to ignore it. I allow the clock to go down while waiting for a black balloon. As soon as it appears I click it and end the game.

All the balloons I got can be spent on power ups and different shaped balloons. SIlly DLC options are there to con Jerry out of his money in exchange for better balloon hauls in the future. I click through the power ups and switch the game off it’s not time to be Jerry any more.

Jerry’s game is a simplistic game that I could easily believe was made as a joke.
For 15 minutes it was the greatest game ever.
It pulled me out of one of the worst moments of my life for a short time.
It allowed my brain to not completely focus on the hospital room I was sitting in.
Now the game is off and I look at my wife thankfully asleep after going through the worst day of our lives.

In the tiny bed next to her our son lies looking as though he’s asleep as well.
Our poor Lucas who never got to open his eyes, or laugh, or cry.

Playing a silly mobile game that was probably a throwaway idea at adult swim allowed me to not focus completely on losing our son for 15 minutes. That in turn allowed me to finally cry and begin to grieve.

Jerry’s game didn’t come out in 2016 but it was my game of the year.


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