Moving Out is a new game out this week on PC, Switch, PS4 and Xbox One. It’s a singleplayer or co-op experience, full of wacky arm-bending and physics gags, and depending on how you’re involved with the process is also an eerily accurate simulation of the art of moving house.
As we’ve reviewed previously on this video game website, moving house is hard work and sucks, as it involves loads of time, money and bother. However, that’s when it’s you moving your own stuff. Moving someone else’s stuff? That’s different!
Moving Out (the game, not the act) has you playing as a the world’s worst/best removalist, whose only job is to look at a house full of stuff, look at their truck and work out the best way to get everything from the former into the latter.
Consideration for someone else’s belongings, and the house they’re moving out from, don’t apply here. It’s you, the stuff, the truck and a clock. That’s it. You can be careful if you want, but you’re on the clock, man, it’s better to be as quick as you can and just move the stuff.
And so this is really a game about wrecking shit. Need a double bed out of the way? Just drag it across the living room, knocking over books and tables. NES have to go in the truck? Don’t drag it all the way there, just get in sight of the truck and throw it on!
The point of the game is optimising your selection of items and the way you can move and pack them, but the fun is the destruction. It doesn’t matter how many times I do it, but having moved a family of four twice last year there is nothing more fun (and cathartic) in the world than throwing moving boxes out a window or smashing a bookcase against a doorframe for thirty seconds until it simply grinds through.
This is all fun because Moving Out has a gentle, rubbery control system where your characters glide around the levels (which begin with regular houses but then get out there) like they’re in a slash-em-up, but have arms that wobble like they’re a muppet in a full-body scene. So getting to objects is easy, but there’s a lot of flexibility once you’re holding them as to how you can pivot and move.
It’s technically playable solo, where heavier objects become magically easier for one person to move, but the game’s clearly deigned—and shines—with others, where you can coordinate your actions and have to argue/laugh your asses off about how you’re getting that enormous couch out the door.
Originally due in 2019, Moving Out finally dropped on April 28.