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sick & definitely resonates w me. facing this worst case scenario like this is weirdly cathartic. also the main character n general design is really cute, it makes the reveal very unexpected (even tho I accidentally read the first sentence of the spoilers before playing... my eyes skip when reading, oops!). thanks for releasing this & adding it to the queer games bundle!

Miles! Your use of the game's mechanic as a storytelling conceit is amazing. I think it's super dope how you are able to communicate this feeling of facing an increasingly difficult task in front of more and more expectant faces all through mashing the space key until your wrist hurts. It's tuned in a way where level 5 still feels "possible" so your inevitable failure does feel like your fault, even though it is impossible. As someone who struggles with artistic burnout as well and has been feeling similar anxieties, I think your game communicates the feeling it tries to really well, and in a way that doesn't just sledgehammer you in the face saying "BURNOUT BAD" in all caps. It really makes the player feel the struggle themself. In terms of critique, I guess I liked the way the crowd felt less grid-like in the earlier levels, so maybe overlapping some of the people in level 5 a bit might make it feel a bit more organic? Also I think that you could try slowing or distorting the music as you stop at the end to help communicate the feeling that something is wrong. Overall though, great job!

Hi Miles, this game really spoke to me, thank you for sharing it. I think the message you’ve achieved here is really powerful. Before reading your explanation, my mind was focusing on the fear of showing work to a larger and larger audience, and I thought that was really clear and well represented here. After reading your explanation, I see how it relates to burnout as a whole, and I think you also communicated how that outside audience focus on internal work and achievements is a part of burnout. I think your game does a phenomenal job expressing your personal feelings and allowing others to relate. I have been feeling similarly with the combination of the relentlessness of Major Studio and the sometimes demoralizing stories shared in Survival Skills. Overall I don’t really have any nitpicks or changes I would make, I just wanted to share how impactful your game was and thank you for putting it out there for us to play.

Hey Miles, the progression in this game is amazing! I love how personal it is to you and the way the the story is shown both in the gameplay & narration. The fact that the game becomes this laborious button smashing that barely moves the character at all feels incredibly relatable. I feel like it’s really interesting that nothing happens if you just don’t move for a long time and there’s no real consequence to whether you finish in 10 seconds or 100. It’s not necessarily super satisfying, but I think it does add an interesting layer of meaning to the metaphor.

One little critique is that the on some of the backgrounds it’s really clear where the tiles start & end so it does feel like the audience is just repeating rather than like you’re actually going somewhere - maybe that’s intentional, maybe not. Another TEENY tiny spacing thing - if you go over 100 seconds, the “c” in sec is going out of the little text window.

This game has a really powerful visual & audio style and it’s super meaningful! You did an awesome job on this.

This turned out so good Miles! I feel like even without the context for why the game crashes/blackscreens it's easy to just see the struggle of what it means to be an artist and constantly create content for people to see. The mechanic especially communicates this well because of how exhausting it becomes to tap the space bar each level. I really loved the art and think you did really did well with choosing the audio for the game as well. 

One thing I felt a little mixed about how the background looked in the last level because it was messing with my eyes a lot, but that's the point if I'm guessing correctly! The player is supposed to be overwhelmed by this audience that started out so small and grew over time. It's stressful and tiring as heck!

I'm not sure I actually have any other critiques besides maybe having the timer being used for more things? Like showing the total time it took to get where you are could've been neat, but at the same time I lowkey feel like the timer not having meaning adds more to the message. I say this mainly because all artists grow at different rates and so the time it takes for them to get to a certain amount of followers or successes doesn't actually matter. But yeah, I think that's all I really have to say. Good job!! ^^