Since I’m mostly unemployed for the moment, I have been spending way too much time exploring the web, but in the process I have discovered some interesting things. After seeing this interview on we make money not art I downloaded The Endless Forest. So now every time I walk away from my computer an imaginary deer appears, sleeping in an imaginary forest. Part game, part screen saver, part art, The Endless Forest is both fascinating and sleep inducing.

In some ways, The Endless Forest reminds me of Myst. The graphics are beautiful, the landscape is peaceful and mysterious. But unlike Myst, there is no goal involved, not mystery to unravel. The forest is for exploring and you may meet other deer and interact with them. The main interaction seems to be transforming your own appearance or those of other deer. One day I returned to my computer to find myself transformed into a white dove, another a frog. So far I haven’t spent any time reading help files or interacting with the discussion forums, prefering to explore the forest intuitively.

On the down side, the music that started up every time I walked away from my computer was slightly annoying (I’m not a big fan of audio on websites either), but I just turned the music setting to the off position and solved that problem. I’m also not clear on how well the program is interacting with other programs. My virus scan seemed to lock up in conflict with the game. I also haven’t quite figured out the interface. Maybe it’s just too much WOW, but I can turn the deer around and walk forward and backward, but I can seem to look around or change directions.

Mostly, I’m just jealous, that frick’n deer gets to sleep in the dappled sunlight all day while I work!

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