A 90's edutainment and horror game crossover
Not all game genres can be combined together and create a stellar game. Any rational person would think that combining old 90’s edutainment games and modern horror games like Five Nights at Freddy’s would result in a flaming mess, but it seems the creator of Baldi's Basics in Education and Learning thought that it’s a spectacular idea. Fortunately for creator Micah McGonigal, the crazy idea was a massive success. Baldi's Basics in Education and Learning is not at all what it seems, and players should heed the warnings before proceeding into the game.
Premise and Gameplay
The premise of Baldi’s Basics in Education and Learning is simple. You play a student in the eponymous’ Baldi’s Schoolhouse, and your objective is to collect seven notebooks that your friend left behind. As you collect each notebook, you are prompted with three math questions. The first notebook and the problems in it are easy and ordinary. However, the problems in each notebook start to become more and more bizarre as you collect more. Some questions are just black scribbles that are impossible to answer. Baldi starts to come after you when you answer problems incorrectly.
There are also other characters roaming around the schoolhouse who will try to hinder your progress such as Playtime, a girl that randomly asks you to jump rope when you encounter her. There is also a Principal, a sock puppet, an animated mop, and more.
Graphics and Presentation
For most people, the graphics will probably make or break their opinion of this game. Since Baldi’s Basics in Education and Learning was based on 90’s edutainment games, it’s not surprising that the graphics are a bit rudimentary, even uncanny at times. However, it can be very difficult to look at. That said, this graphic style was clearly intended to cause discomfort among players, so it’s a minor gripe.
One major gripe against this game, though, is the lack of a comprehensive tutorial. Clicking on “How to Play” will lead you to a page that discusses your objectives, but there are no instructions about controls and other mechanics. This could ruin the game due to spoilers and there is a certain element of fun learning how things work. However, it can be unnecessarily frustrating when you lose in the beginning because there were no instructions.
Who Is This For?
It’s unclear who this game is really meant for. There are existential jokes thrown in that kids probably won’t get, but if Five Nights at Freddy’s is too frightening for kids, this is a good alternative. Older kids or young adults will probably appreciate this more due to nostalgia.
Weird, But Effective
Baldis Basics in Education and Learning is a very weird combination of two genres that have no business being combined. Despite this, it is a very enjoyable game if you’re a fan of simulation or horror games like Freddy. Its weird graphics may need getting used to, but all in all, it’s worth a try if even if it’s only for the bragging rights of having tried it.=