Gris is a visual masterpiece. It’s a living watercolour illustration that explores the complex themes of loss and grief through a visually arresting world and affecting orchestral score. At first glance, Gris looks to be a fitting bookend to a year that started with Celeste – a game that married an exploration of mental illness with incredible platforming gameplay, but ultimately its basic level design and many minor frustrations make its exceptional qualities feel only skin deep.

Gris’s story can be obtuse at times as it opts to tell it through symbolism rather than dialogue. The main character, a heartbroken young woman, has lost her voice and wanders the empty, motley world with no real sense of purpose. As she explores and the landscape changes from windswept deserts littered with debris and collapsed buildings to forests and underwater labyrinths that hide curious creatures both friend and foe, she learns new skills to overcome obstacles and eventually find her way “out”. Like a painting in an art gallery or an art house film, Gris leaves itself open to interpretation.

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Source: IGN Games Reviews

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