The UnderGarden

Spotlight

The UnderGarden cross-pollenates to PSN

Ambient PC/XBLA plaything due soon.

The UnderGarden, an eccentric puzzler from indie developer Vitamin-G that blossomed on PC and Xbox Live Arcade last year, is heading to PlayStation Network.

The UnderGarden

The UnderGarden

Gardeners whirled.

The first thing you should know: The UnderGarden is a game. That may seem like stating the obvious, but it's true. Every mention of the game so far has made prominent use of the word "casual", usually followed by any combination of "ambient", "trippy" and "chilled out". The impression given is that it's more of an interactive mushroom experience and not the sort of game to totally harsh your buzz with downers like objectives and completion ratings and woah man, just relax, OK?

And to begin with, that seems like a fairly accurate description. You control a chubby alien pixie thing, able to float through the air in a garden that makes Avatar's lush luminous jungle look like a manky old lettuce and a couple of dandelions. It's a sumptuous, wondrous environment and one that immediately rewards exploration.

Bounce off a green blob, helpfully brought to your attention by the minimalist tutorial, and a cloud of pollen ejaculates lazily into the air. As you scoop it up, each piece gives off a tinkling chime, an escalating sing-song scale that makes the game's key mechanic a tactile joy.

Read more