For our second edition of Indie Spotlight Thursdays, I played the surreal point and click game The Tender Cut. Made by Russian indie developer No, Thanks Games, they describe their game as:

a first person interactive installation/exploration adventure game inspired by the “Il etait une fois” scene from Luis Bunuel’s movie “Un Chien Andalou“. It invites the viewer/player to dive into a surreal atmosphere, sharing the character’s experience.

The Tender Cut Screenshot

The Tender Cut Screenshot © No, Thanks Games

When the game starts, you’re sitting in a chair facing a TV that loops through the aforementioned scene from Un Chien Andalou. You get up and interact with various objects in the room. As you can see from the video above, the mechanics are pretty straightforward and the game is quite short as it takes 10 to 20 minutes to complete but that’s not The Tender Cut‘s focus. This is about atmosphere and experience. Each play through was a bit different and I consistently discovered new interactions. Each time I launched the game, I was taken aback by the particularly eery atmosphere of the room and felt a slight sensation of claustrophobia.

Another angle of the room in The Tender Cut

Another angle of the room. The Tender Cut Screenshot © No, Thanks Games

There is not plot or story line in The Tender Cut, no heroes, no villains, just yourself and the confined space. Like any work that takes root in the surrealist movement, it is complex, layered and open to interpretation. I felt like I was in someone’s dream. The dreamer seemed focus on a lover. How the game ends determines what the dreamer’s main recollection will be: sexual or emotional. But that’s just my interpretation. You can play Then Tender Cut and experience it for yourself. The game is out now for PC and Mac and you can download it for free at thetendercut.info.

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