The Unfinished Swan and The Art of Making A Mess

Playing The Unfinished Swan feels a lot like being three years old. You make a terrible mess, and then when someone asks you "Why did you do that?" the only real answer you have is that, weirdly, it felt right. There was just something about that wall that begged to be drawn on with crayons, something about the VCR that just begged to have a PB&J sandwich in it.

It's an urge, not a reason. And The Unfinished Swan captures that magnificently.

The Unfinished Swan and The Art of Making A Mess

Stephen mentioned in his review that he was a fan of the texture of the sound in the game. I like the visual texture. There's something childishly satisfying about throwing paint hard against a wall and seeing it splatter in every direction. There's something amazing about watching water evaporate into nothingness. There's nothing rational about it: That's just how it is.

The Unfinished Swan and The Art of Making A Mess

The Unfinished Swan and The Art of Making A Mess

Jackson Pollock once said the following about his painting The She Wolf:

"[the painting] came into existence because I had to paint it...Any attempt on my part to say something about it, to attempt explanation of the inexplicable, could only destroy it."

The Unfinished Swan and The Art of Making A Mess

A large part of learning any art is embracing the messy urges you had as a child, about re-cultivating your toddler-brain. It's that Wu Wei impulse of doing for the sake of doing, about throwing things against the wall just to see what sticks. At its best moments, The Unfinished Swan feels like a celebration of that.

Splat.

The Unfinished Swan and The Art of Making A Mess