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App Army Assemble: Pigeon: A Love Story – Should you take to the skies with this meditative adventure game?

Pigeon: A Love Story is a meditative adventure game where you play as a pigeon who is looking for its soulmate. The game takes place above the streets of London as you begin your search and, according to the developer, there are over 1 million pigeons to meet. So, to narrow the search a little, we handed the game over to our App Army.

Here’s what they had to say:

Funem

The premise is you are a Pigeon looking for your soulmate. You fly around an overhead map, if you are online then it’s a map of London, if you are offline then it’s randomly generated. Random other birds fly around and also what looks like large washers, there is also a mini-map in the top corner. I think I gave this game a fair shot, I flew about, I hit the button to make the bird emit noise and turn other birds in front of him on the screen red, I collected washers. I did this for about 20min, to be honest, I was no more aware of what I was doing than when I started. There are no instructions and no goal I can see I could aim for other than find your soulmate.

I have no idea what the other birds going red or the washers were about. The developer says is an experimental game, I don’t think it’s really even a game yet. It’s like the beginnings of a game where the basic control idea has been thought out and realised and the map scrolling function added. It’s like it’s still waiting for the game elements to be added. I think the developer knows this as they have said it’s “experimental”. As a concept, I can get behind it, it’s early days if it was a game in development, but if it’s a final product and it cost any form of money, then I find it very hard to recommend

Jojó Reis

The first view you have is that it is a relaxing game, your music gives you a way to relax while playing, the gameplay is very simple where you have to grab some cookies and throw some at some pigeons and see if you can be matched and so you look for your partner, good for me was what it seemed because the game gets a little strange and you don’t see any deep explanation about the game and what to do. the graphic part is very good and combines with the soundtrack.

Oksana Ryan

It’s not often that I’m speechless but I think this game has me stumped for sure. The actual ‘gameplay’ seems to consist of flying over a very grey and boxy landscape of London, while endlessly cooing for your ideal pigeon to answer and flying into large doughnuts, which I assume are meant to be food. That’s it. There are no perches to rest on, no predictors to dodge – nothing.

As you coo, strange messages appear on the screen, presumably from other pigeons, telling you they don’t have time, you’re not their type, maybe next time, that sort of thing. More times than not you can’t read them before they vanish. That about sums up the game. I know it’s meant to be a slow, mediative game, but after a few minutes of playing I caught on that the music was the soothing element and the rest was just window dressing. Definitely not for me.

Jim Linford

I played it flew over south-east London to pick out sights I may I know. Surprisingly detailed, as for gameplay err I’m not sure you just fly around cooing and getting rejected. The game informs you there are 1 million pigeons go find love and that seems to be it. I got about 1300 rejections then realised I hey want you to hunt down the 1 million. I don’t know how long that will take and so far it seems like an idle clicker game. I can’t see a hook. Not sure this game is for me.

Torbjörn Kämblad

Back in the day I really enjoyed tech demos for both the Commodore 64 and Amiga 500 showcasing different technical ideas. I remember watching and affecting fractals, sounds and lighting effects. Those were?t games but still hooked me with ideas of the future. Playing Pigeon – A love story is akin to those demos. Not a game per se, but rather an idea of tech to use when creating a game.

Flying around like a pigeon over London, or a randomly generated city cooing to fill other pigeons with love is quite relaxing. The odd doughnut to pick up might be the only element resembling a game. The controls are limited to turning left, right, and cooing. Nothing more that I have found. No tutorial needed, as there is no challenge to be found besides your own patience and urge to find a lover for your winged protagonist.

Would I recommend Pigeon – A love story? No, not really. I see this as a tech demo with an engine that could be used for other games. I imagined flying a chopper like Trevor from GTA 5 mowing down enemies, and escaping to different points on the map. And the connection between Trevor and a pigeon is obvious, both are quite annoying.

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Ed Davis

Ummmmmmm… well, I do enjoy a meditative game now and again, I’m not sure this was one for me. You’re thrown right into a map that is apparently London (or a random one offline) and are tasked with finding your pigeon soul mate. If there was more to finding them, a bit more of a storyline, then it might be more entertaining, but I think I lasted a whole 2 minutes before deciding it wasn’t for me.

Mark Abukoff

Minimalist is fine up to a point. The background is minimalist. The pigeons are minimalist. The sound is fine. The controls work fine. But I just have to be honest here, after a thousand or so pigeon friends I could not figure out why I was playing this and frankly couldn’t justify spending more time on it. If the scenery looked more like London. If you could join a hundred other pigeons landing on statues it’d give you something to think about or at least break the monotony. If there was a challenge of some kind. But there isn’t. It’s like accumulating thousands of anonymous followers on social media with absolutely no meaning or interaction. Sorry, but the game goes nowhere and does next to nothing and I can’t recommend anyone buying it.

Paul Manchester

Sometimes it’s nice to kick back and enjoy a relaxed interactive experience without the worry of lives, bosses and power-ups. However, the key to those experiences is having either beautiful surroundings to explore or nifty gameplay mechanics to mess with. Unfortunately, this ‘game’ has neither of those.

Its grey, dull and lifeless recreation of London is filled with basic pigeon silhouettes and some sort of flying metal doughnuts. Fly in a straight line or slightly rotate left/right, whilst cooing at your fellow avian feathered friends in an endlessly repetitive and pointless time waster. After about 5minutes (I don’t know how I managed that long) I had seen enough and don’t plan to take flight again any time soon.

Naail Zahid

What in God’s name is this game about? Not only did I not have any explanation as to what I’m supposed to be doing (1000000 pigeons and I’m supposed to dig through them all for just one, maybe?) but there’s no explanation for controls or how we can achieve anything either. The music is soothing and the graphics are pretty minimalistic, However, after playing the game for hours on end, I still have no idea what we are supposed to do. Honestly, I just gave up after reaching 12000 pigeons I’d cooed at.

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