Top Critic Average
Waking tries to take the best of many different genres but creates a horrible mess of clashing, ugly parts.
Waking is a fascinating experiment that tries, but ultimately fails, to combine two radically different ideas together. Less would certainly have been more here, as the clunky and overly confusing action parts get in the way of the interesting narrative and psychological aspects. While I was drawn in by the central conceit and the use of meditation, the end result is more likely to leave you in a coma than drag you into the light.
I recommend Waking to any player, of any skill-level, looking for a unique, emotional, and personal experience.
Perhaps with a couple of in-depth quality-of-life updates, Waking can be something special. For now, the reality is its unique narrative is held back by some fundamental design oversights.
Waking tries to be a very unique experience, but all it manages to do is be way too long, frustrating, and unintentionally hilarious
Waking is a game that attempts to be two very different things, and for the most part, it succeeds quite well. If you're willing to devote a little bit of time to learning its quirky systems, you're in for a potentially rewarding experience. An experience which encourages you to close your eyes, take a deep breath, and go back into your memories.
They say never judge a book by the cover, as whats inside almost always is better than whats outside. In Waking's case however, the only pretty thing is the cover. Shallow and broken gameplay? Check. Bad controls? Check. Poor visuals? Check. Innovations?. Nowhere to be found. Worth a shot? Probably not.
Review in Persian | Read full review
Ultimately, Waking is its own worst enemy, since it seems confused as to what kind of game/experience it wants itself to be. The memory sections are interesting to say the least, but Waking has burdened itself with some really average action sequences.
Waking will have you eager to wake up within the first few hours. Its compelling self-reflective narrative is overshadowed by some of the worse adventure mechanics and systems that I have played in quite some time. Perhaps the game should go through some self-reflecting of its own and figure out exactly what it wants to be because this is a complete mess.
...one of the slowest and painful games to play this year.