Pony Island is a game about ponies, programming and you being the worst playtester in existence. Saying anything more would spoil the game. So go play it!
Seriously though, from this point on it is gonna be spoiler territory, so listener beware and turn back yonder. Your experience might be spoiled and this is a game I recommend to go in blank.
Pony Island was the first Steam Sale game I picked up this year. I had no prior knowledge of the game going in, beyond the fact that the game was listed as a GOTY from Jim Sterling (famous for the Jimquisition). And as a game, it is well worth it.
The titular game ‘Pony Island’ is a poorly programmed mess and to even start playing you need to start messing with the options (where you have to debug the correct option). And when you finally start the game, an unknown voice starts speaking to you, complaining that you ‘just had to fix it’. This immediatley sets the tone, as Pony Island at it’s core is just a simple endless runner, and the game starts pushing it from there. Although the game didn’t give me the same type of feels Undertale managed to give me (nearing the end I didn’t particularly care about the characters), it does pull of the metafiction aspect very well. Don’t go in this game expecting it to be a horror game. If anything, it felt more of a comedy to me.
Now for the SERIOUS spoilers.
With that out of the way, let’s talk about something else, and this is just a little theory I have come up with regarding the game. Namely, the game is an ever- increasing example of a game developer who is trying to shill money out of you. This is examplified by the games developer (a comedic version of Lucifer/Satan (the two are used interchangeably)) who is trying to get your soul in exchange for ever-increasing ridiculous rewards. It shows his progress from going from an unscrupulous moneymaker (INSERT YOUR SOUL TO UNLOCK THE REST OF THE GAME!) to the more shady type who passive-agressively tries to get you to sell over your soul (SELL YOUR SOUL TO GET THE SPECIAL EDITION, or continue playing like a pleb). It’s an interesting development that takes place, as the titular Pony Island becomes a modern day mobile game (the games ‘second version’) when it changes the setting to tasting very much like diabetes and introduces a silly looking mascot in a red suit to the game (who you eventually rather satisfyingly get to shoot).
But that’s just a theory.
Alright if someone just read my first bit, and then scrolled to the end, here are my words to you:
Fuck you, go play Pony Island. It’s a good game.