In Horatio’s latest video, he is snowboarding in a snowy mountain range. This game has no story or purpose but at the same time it is one of his best games because the graphics are beautiful and they show off how amazing VR can be.
Horatio is a snowboarder who loves spending time in the mountains. He has been snowboarding for years and knows how to ride the slopes. Horatio’s family owns a ski resort, so he spends his days working there during the winter months. One day, Horatio decides that he wants to go snowboarding again, but he doesn’t have any money to buy a new board.
It takes a bold spirit to send a message to the world about the plight of mankind on occasion. Sure, we may come out on the street corners and shout vehemently against Big Brother’s and other Big Establishment’s deeds, but such folks either vanish or are ridiculed on TikTok. No, it’s the subversive method that’s gaining hold, the notion that you can conceal your ideas in plain sight while yet doing something extraordinary. When it came to bringing down the institutions that suppress human rights and imprison those who disagree, Infinite State Games understood they had to keep their calm. So, ostensibly as a tribute to an obscure ZX Spectrum game, they released Horatio Goes Snowboarding and accomplished the impossible: they attacked both privatized health care and consumerism in a single, devastating strike.
Horatio’s Journey Snowboarding is an apparently infinite arcade game that combines skiing with traffic avoiding. You play Horatio, or so I believe: to be honest, it was never actually explained. Horatio has a desire to perform some sick downhill snowboarding, but he has no interest on jumps, tricks, or anything more than a basic slalom approach. Horatio, on the other hand, is plagued with ailments that have displaced him to the point that he has no home or abode. Instead, Horatio seems to reside in the local hospital, which is just six blocks from the local snow chopper, which transports you to the slopes.
We start where it all starts: with the birth of a fresh suffering.
To get to the helicopter, Horatio must navigate numerous lanes of traffic, after which you’ll be dumped off at the top with one of his signature catchphrases, such as “Snowboard or Die” or something else (he has several, and I can’t always tell what he’s saying). To go past the flag gates and to the finish, Horatio must overcome trees, rocks, and the odd yeti. Then Horatio will be transported back to the top of the mountain to do it all over again, this time a bit more tough, and the fresh run will be labeled as a new day. Rinse, lather, and repeat until you’ve had enough of this game or, more sinisterly, until you’ve run out of money.
Horatio Goes to War seems to be a simple story. Snowboarding looks to be a fast-paced arcade game that more closely resembles SkiFree than anything else. In today’s world, a snowboarding game with no motion is already a risky proposition (by which I mean any snowboarding game made after the creation of SSX Tricky). There are no restrictions, and the scoring system is reasonable, albeit a little random. If you graze near to a tree on the course but don’t hit it, you gain a “grandstanding” bonus. Running over other mountain dwellers (who are virtually always skiing) and striking snowmen earns you additional points. The yeti will emerge at random, but if you get out of the path quickly enough, you won’t be killed.
It’s worth noting that the Yeti isn’t nearly as spiteful as its forefather, the Windows 95 Yeti.
Each course is procedurally created, with the number of obstacles increasing rapidly as you go, ending in the chaos of day seven. Horatio accelerates, but you may slow him down by strafing on the mountain (but not too much, or you’ll be knocked off the screen). If you get 100,000 points, you’ll unlock endless mode, which is…basically what I just said, but with no end to the day. Doesn’t seem that complicated, does it?
Horatio Goes, you see. Snowboarding is deftly addressing the industry’s difficulties as a whole. Take, for example, Horatio’s snowboarding adventures. There are a plethora of hues to pick from every time you approach the rack. Colors such as red, purple, and green may be used. Horatio, on the other hand, always selects yellow, and the player is never given the option of choosing a color. That there is no board retention if you need to start a run over, the sole explanation for this must be because yellow is the cheapest color snowboard.
Someone will come to your rescue from the mountain (or from traffic, but more on that later), but no one will come to your bedside and get your shiny new snowboard. Isn’t it intriguing? It’s almost as if whomever is saving Horatio’s life is deliberately setting him up to need to purchase a new board, even though he hardly used the prior one. Horatio recognizes the cycle of single-use snowboards and opts for the cheaper (20 pounds) board over a more colorful (and maybe more costly) one. Horatio despises the color yellow, yet he is compelled to use it since it is the only choice that makes sense in his consumerist world. Horatio is pursuing the market for intentional obsolescence!
The yellow board came to a halt for me because I did not stop for it.
It doesn’t end there, however. Consider how Horatio spawns each game, and how Horatio Goes Snowboarding sets you up to FAIL even before you start. You might be at a lodge of some kind, an apartment, or, heck, you could simply go up to the top of the mountain without any preface, as most of the skiing games of the period “allegedly” pay tribute to do. But, since Horatio is “born” in the hospital at the start of each run, he’s immediately forced to evade a slew of automobiles just to get to the chopper.
Is there a quick method for Horatio to get to the snowboarding section, something easier and more logical? Absolutely not: he has to avoid other automobiles (people caught in a world of arduous commutes), public service vehicles (who are they serving? ), and pedestrians. What about the people? I doubt it) and even little poles to keep automobiles off the sidewalk, but in actuality, they’re making it harder for you to get onto the sidewalk as a car is barreling down on you.
If you make it all the way to the helicopter, you’ll be rewarded in two ways. Finally, you get to go snowboarding and get points. What are the functions of points? Nothing. You may be rewarded with money, but that would be a desire of a fool. You earn points, which may or may not be worth anything in the future. This means Horatio must risk his life simply to begin the game, and with no assistance, he may potentially end the game without ever snowboarding, and his reward is now getting to do what the player paid for the game. Doesn’t this seem a little too much like the rat race we call the early education system?
Don’t belittle me: it won’t even cover a third of the wrongdoing.
But the most glaring message in Horatio Goes Snowboarding is being on a snowboard. Horatio rushes down the mountain with nothing more than a quip that could have come from any extreme sports fan from the 1990s, with little control over what he’s doing. Getting to the end of the day earns you a little financial award, but it’s crucial to realize that this is just around fifteen pounds for the first and second days combined. Should you fail, two days’ worth of labor won’t even cover a new board, and striking anything (a tree, a rock, a yeti) terminates the run and sends you back to the hospital for ONE HUNDRED POUNDS.
Sure, Horatio begins with enough money in his wallet to respawn a few times, but there’s something else to keep in mind. Horatio is not sent back to the town if he completes his day’s run. He doesn’t have any spare time. He’s dragged back in front of the hospital, practically mocking his inability to purchase a home, and subjected to the same humiliations as previously. Horatio still scrapes for his life in the same way he did when he was nothing, no matter how far he’s come. This demonstrates how our society barely compensates winners while punishing losers in the most heinous manner possible: by having them pay for merely being “less than.”
Furthermore, the “winners” get the “prize” of returning to work and returning down the hill, but with a higher level of difficulty that still awards relatively little. You must make it to the fifth day to gain enough money for a “extra life,” which is an impossible task when the game speeds up to the point of blurring and trees, rocks, and that goddamn Yeti emerge out of nowhere. This is the rat race of life: you work your tail off because it’s required of you, and you’re only permitted to live long enough to do more if you pay money after hurting your back.
The skiers have no idea what they’re up against. They are blameless and condemned because of their ignorance.
Other hints may be found throughout the book. Horatio Goes Snowboarding’s whole soundtrack might have been modern hip hop, classical music, or even ska, but it’s definitely 90s influenced breakbeat music instead. Breakbeat, such as Chemical Brothers or Trip Theory, and any music included in the societally challenging film The Matrix, which I don’t believe is that far fetched. Horatio is clearly in a simulation of some sort, with expectations beyond his control, rewards that appear to benefit someone other than himself, and the game’s greatest “unlock” is the ability to go down the mountain indefinitely, almost as if pushing a rock up a hill indefinitely would be a reward.
Horatio is a character that exists between between Keanu Reeves and Sysiphus, and he has a dreadful life that he must cope with and understand. How else can he comprehend the glorious release of freedom that is death, which may or may not be followed by an afterlife? Worse, what if this is Horatio’s afterlife, much like the reviled Greek villain?
Is it a Gabriel or a Charon helicopter? It is dependent on the location.
I went into Horatio Goes Snowboarding expecting a game that would be a mix between Papers, Please and I Have No Mouth and Must Scream, but I never imagined a game that would be a cross between Papers, Please and I Have No Mouth and Must Scream. Philistines will only see a basic arcade game, but I’ve pulled back the curtain to reveal the underlying message beneath, and it’s a magnificent indictment of the society we live in. Infinite State Games, I see you, and I’m with you. Let’s all work together to bring down the establishment, one snowboard at a time.
A simple background and a beautiful blue mascot assist to highlight the inequity that exists around us.
Snowboarding with no buttons, similar to the loss of control we all experience.
The royalty-free breakbeat serves as a reminder to all of us to break free and reject the fabricated reality in front of us.
Enlightenment and awakening aren’t supposed to be enjoyable; they’re supposed to open your damned eyes.
Final Score: 5.5
On the PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PC, and Nintendo Switch, Horatio Goes Snowboarding is now available.
On the Nintendo Switch, a review was conducted.
The publisher sent me a copy of Horatio Goes Snowboarding.
As an example:
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- cool snowboards
- snowboarding resorts
- snowboard kids