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Life Is Strange’s devs have another hit with Jusant

Life Is Strange re-defined videogame storytelling, and while Don't Nod's new adventure, Jusant, is very different, it's just as memorable.

A character with short black haie and red skin with tattoos stands in a bay area wearing a brown poncho snuggling their face against a small liquid animal

Jusant is Don’t Nod’s new climbing-focused “meditative” experience. Characterized by a unique, colorful cartoon art style and a gentle, rolling soundtrack, it’s a far cry from my usual haunt, League of Legends. Yet, I’ve found my experience oh-so intriguing, and I can’t quite remember ever playing a game like Jusant.

We all need a relaxing game from time to time. Whether you’ve been jumpscared one too many times in Alan Wake 2, or just suffered your fifth ranked loss in a row in League of Legends, sometimes you need some time to unwind. That, for me, is what Jusant does.

You’re thrust into the shoes of a silent protagonist, whose bright red skin is adorned with mysterious black markings. Your task is to scale a huge tower and unravel its secrets using the objects around you – and there are an awful lot of them. You see, this stone structure was once home to a thriving community, who, for whatever reason, have gradually chosen to leave – Bianca, for example, has chosen to go on a great adventure, and a local cafe owner admits that they were struggling to get customers into their restaurant.

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Amid all of these scraps of diaries, lives, and leftovers, your mysterious little fluid companion is perhaps the most perplexing. Their soft squeaks can be used to awaken the world around you; go close to a withered plant and press ‘E’, for example, and it begins to grow again, snaking up the wall to provide you with a new route upwards. How? Well, you’ll find out.

I played on PC with mouse and keyboard despite the game’s recommendations, and while it took a moment to get used to, I love how the game’s core climbing mechanic works. You control your arms individually, so you’ll be clicking the left and right mouse button constantly, giving you a real feeling of momentum.

A cartoon character stands on a wall holding onto a rope

Wrap all of that exploration up in some of the most beautiful surroundings I’ve seen in a videogame in a long time and you get Jusant. I’ll admit I was skeptical about just how “mediative” a game focused on climbing could be, but honestly, it really is soothing. Oh, and you can pet your companion, so yeah, that makes it a ten in itself.

Jusant released on Tuesday, October 31, and is available right now on Steam. If its spectacular visuals and vast avenues of exploration have you intrigued, then you can pick it up on Steam right here – it’s currently sitting at “very positive,” after all.

A shadowy figure looks up at a ceiling with a blue watery light on it, with two altars next to them

If you’re not looking to buy, though (October was a good month for gaming, I know) you can also play Jusant on Xbox Game Pass as well. There’s no excuse, friends, the tower awaits.

If you’re looking for some more adventures but are hesitant to splash the cash, we have a list of the best free Steam games to help you out. Alternatively, if you’re looking for some more brain-teasers, we’ve got a rundown of all the best puzzle games, too.