Tuesday, November 1, 2011

One Chance

What would you do if you discovered that there were only a few days left to your life... not to mention that lives of everyone you know, and everyone you don't?

That's the idea behind One Chance, an odd little art game where the world is about to succumb to a deadly virus. You're one of the scientists responsible for accidentally creating the virus, and now you need to decide how you'll spend your final days on Earth.


Surely just about every grown person has considered the idea that the planet might end one day, through a giant asteroid or a plague or alien invasion or something, and having the chance to act it out is pretty neat. What makes One Chance really nifty, though, is that you really do only get one shot at success - after you 'beat' the game once, you can't go back and start over. (Unless, you know, you empty your browser cache. But that's not the point!)

What makes this game's concept so neat, though, is that it blends your character's personal life with his professional. If you decide to pursue a cure to the virus, you may well succeed - but your family will pay the price for your negligence. You need to balance your priorities to keep them going... but then the world will suffer.

Oh, and you have a cute little daughter.

But you can betray your family!

See the problem? It's not an easy game to stomach.


Very, very simple. Move left and right, occasionally stop to interact with people or objects. This aspect of One Chance can get frustrating, as it takes your character a long time to move from one screen to the other, and you'll often have to move through multiple screens to get where you're going. Though the pace does add a sense of impending doom, as you're forced to watch society crumble around you, going from this...

To this...

Aaaaaand eventually to this.



Decent. The visuals on One Chance are relatively basic, appearing as though they've been constructed from construction paper. They serve their purpose nicely.


There's only one song in this game, and it plays constantly. It's a fitting tune, given the theme of the game, but it gets a little aggravating after a while... and once the world goes kaput, silence works just as well, so don't feel too bad if you turn off your speakers.

(Oh, and there is one part with a song by Tautou, but that doesn't count.)

Challenge Rating

You don't really win or lose in this game, you just decide. Each of your decisions has a good and bad side. (Though, uh, admittedly, letting the world die kinda sucks, which usually happens!) That said, getting the ending you want can sometimes be trickier than you'd think, so you might be refreshing that cache more than once.


One Chance is a cool experience, if rather depressing and clunky. You probably won't play it more than once or twice... but those play-throughs should prove thought-provoking nevertheless. And for those of you more interested in the subject, yes, the multiple endings make it a fairly replayable game, which does defeat the PURPOSE, but, oh well.


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