Factsheet

Developer:
Witch Beam
Based in Brisbane, Australia

Release date:
November 2nd, 2021

Platforms:
Windows / Mac / Linux
Nintendo Switch
Xbox One

Website:
http://unpackinggame.com

Regular Price:

USD$19.99

Description

Unpacking is a zen game about the familiar experience of pulling possessions out of boxes and fitting them into a new home. Part block-fitting puzzle, part home decoration, you are invited to create a satisfying living space while learning clues about the life you’re unpacking. Over the course of eight house moves, you are given a chance to experience a sense of intimacy with a character you never see and a story you’re never told.

History

Unpacking was inspired by some real-life unpacking, when Tim moved in with Wren. The two began prototyping the game in late February 2018. In May it was selected for the Stugan game accelerator program, taking Wren and Tim to Sweden for two months where they created a playable demo of the game. A week after the end of Stugan, an animated gif of the game from the official Unpacking Twitter account went viral, achieving over 10,000 likes and attracting 6,000 new followers in 48 hours. Since then Unpacking has been presented at the Freeplay Festival's Parallels Showcase, Day of the Devs 2018, GDC 2019's Mild Rumpus, BitSummit 7 Spirits, the PAX AUS Indie Showcase and more. In November 2021 the game was released to critical acclaim and commercial success, selling over 100,000 copies in its first 10 days. Unpacking has won 10 awards including 2 BAFTAs and the DICE Award for Outstanding Achievement for an Independent Game.

Features

  • Unpack a home — from a single bedroom to an entire house
  • Meditative gameplay with no timers, meters or scores
  • Explore domestic environments with all their nooks and crannies while you stack plates, hang towels, and arrange bookshelves
  • Discover a character's story through the items that come with her to each new home (and the items that get left behind)
  • Soundtrack by BAFTA award-winning composer and audio director Jeff van Dyck

Accessibility

  • No actions require clicking-and-dragging, holding down buttons, or pressing more than one button at a time
  • PC versions support Mouse+keyboard, gamepad, and touch on supported hardware
  • Can be played one-handed on PC using just a mouse
  • Nintendo Switch version supports gamepad, touch, and gyro in two-handed and one-handed configurations
  • Controls are remappable
  • UI buttons can be enlarged and screen can be zoomed in during gameplay
  • The red invalid item outline colour can be changed
  • Room swapping animation can be disabled to avoid motion sickness
  • No gameplay cues are delivered exclusively through audio
  • Music and sound effect volume can be controlled separately
  • No time limits or penalties for missteps
  • Text is minimal and reading is not required to enjoy the game and be able to complete it
  • “Allow items anywhere” option removes the puzzle element of the game to allow any player to progress

Videos

Unpacking Launch Trailer (November 2021) YouTube

Unpacking Accolades Trailer (December 2021) YouTube


GIFs

unpacking_title.gif
unpacking_autorotate.gif
unpacking_steam_bookshelf.gif
KitchenetteUnpack.gif
unpacking_unboxing.gif
unpacking_closet_organise.gif

Images

download all screenshots as .zip (12MB)
Screenshot01.png
Screenshot04.png
unpacking_KeyArt.png
Screenshot03.png
Screenshot06.png
Screenshot02.png
Screenshot05.png
unpacking_KeyArt_16x9.png

Photos

download all photos as .zip (6MB)
GDCA1.jpg
GDCA4.jpg
GDCA3.jpg
GDCA2.jpg

logo
logo

Awards & Recognition

  • "Winner: EE Game of the Year, Narrative; Finalist: Original Property, Family" -BAFTA Game Awards 2022
  • "Winner: Outstanding Achievement for an Independent Game" -D.I.C.E. Awards 2022
  • "Winner: Best Audio, Innovation; Finalist: Best Narrative" -Game Developers Choice Awards 2022
  • "Winner: Game of the Year, Accessibility; Finalist: Gameplay, Art" -Australian Game Developer Awards 2021
  • "Winner: Indie Game of the Year; Finalist: Game of the Year" -NME Awards 2022
  • "Winner: Matthew Crump Award for Cultural Innovation; Finalist: Indie Game of the Year" -SXSW Gaming Awards 2022
  • "Game of the Year" -Eurogamer 2021
  • "Winner: Best Cognitive Accessibility; Finalist: Indie Excellence" -Can I Play That? Accessibility Awards 2021
  • "Finalist: Best User Experience, Family & Kids, Best Game Design, and Puzzle, Strategy & Trivia" -Webby Awards 2022
  • "Finalist: 2D Environment Art, 2D Animation, Narrative Design" -Global Industry Game Awards 2022
  • "Finalist: Seumas McNally Grand Prize, Excellence in Design, Excellence in Narrative, Excellence in Audio" -Independent Games Festival 2022
  • "Finalist: Best Pro Console Game of the Year" -Game Development Championship Awards 2021
  • "Finalist: Sit Back and Relax Award" -Steam Awards 2021
  • "Finalist: Outstanding Video Game" -GLAAD Media Awards 2022
  • "Finalist: Game of the Year, Best LGBTQ Indie Game, and Authentic Representation Award" -Gayming Awards 2022
  • "Finalist: Second Channel Award, Ability to Bypass Award" -Accessibility Awards 2022
  • "Finalist: Vermillion Gate (Best of Show), Innovation, and Sound Design Awards" -BitSummit 7 Spirits
  • "Festival Favourite" -Tiny Teams 2021
  • "Official Selection" -LudoNarraCon 2021
  • "Innovation Award Finalist" -Taipei Game Show 2021
  • "PAX Online Indie Showcase Winner" -PAX Online 2020
  • "Official Selection" -Day of the Devs 2019
  • "PAX AUS Indie Showcase Winner" -PAX AUS 2019
  • "Official Selection" -The NEXT Exhibit 2019
  • "Official Selection" -GDC 2019's Mild Rumpus
  • "Official Selection" -Day of the Devs 2018
  • "Official Selection" -Freeplay Festival's Parallels Showcase 2018
  • "Official Selection" -Stugan 2018 game accelerator program


Selected Articles

  • "One of the most profound and touching experiences I’ve ever had playing a video game."
    - Keith Stuart, The Guardian
  • "Unpacking is a memorable, delightful game that shows that there are still new ways to tell stories in video games out there."
    - Sarah LeBoeuf, IGN
  • "A game of great warmth, intimacy and originality."
    - Tom Faber, Financial Times
  • "Each new box, each new item you pull out, is a little surprise, a little exquisite treasure."
    - Alice Bell, Rock Paper Shotgun
  • "I sense Unpacking will feel personal to everyone who plays it."
    - Todd Martens, LA Times
  • "Unpacking turns the mundanity of moving house into an extraordinary portrait of emotional vulnerability."
    - David Smith, Kotaku Australia
  • "One of the most relaxing and blissful experiences I’ve played all year."
    - Rachel Kaser, VentureBeat
  • "It cut right into my soul with a fine touch."
    - Edmond Tran, GamesHub
  • "There’s an unmatched cathartic joy to the simple act of freeing an object from its paper-packed prison and setting it down in the room."
    - Kieron Verbrugge, Press Start Australia


About Witch Beam

Boilerplate
Witch Beam is a small indie studio based in Brisbane Australia that's committed to creating polished experiences for PC and console. Witch Beam's first release was the critically acclaimed arcade-style action game Assault Android Cactus. They are now developing the very non-arcade style non-action game Unpacking.

More information
More information on Witch Beam, our logo & relevant media are available here.


Unpacking Credits

Wren Brier
Creative Director

Tim Dawson
Technical Director

Jeff van Dyck
Audio Director

Angus Doolan
Pixel Artist

Michelle Whitehead
Pixel Artist

Angela van Dyck
Audio Assistant

Contact

Unpacking Inquiries
Hello@UnpackingGame.com

Unpacking Twitter
http://twitter.com/UnpackingALife

Assault Android Cactus Inquiries
info@assaultandroidcactus.com

Assault Android Cactus Twitter
http://twitter.com/AndroidCactus

Assault Android Cactus Facebook
http://facebook.com/AssaultAndroidCactus

Web
http://www.witchbeam.com.au


presskit() by Rami Ismail (Vlambeer) - also thanks to these fine folks