Platformer Little Orpheus Delayed Indefinitely on PC and Console Due to Soviet Storyline
The console and PC port of Little Orpheus, the side-scrolling adventure game for mobile devices, has been postponed indefinitely “in light of recent world events,” publisher Secret Mode announced Tuesday. The game was originally supposed to come out today. The “recent world events” in question are almost certainly a Russian invasion of Ukraine that has resulted in numerous civilian casualties and military action throughout Ukraine. Little Orpheus is an adventure game set in 1962. It tells about a Soviet cosmonaut who explores the center of the Earth, and the narrator is a stereotypical Russian general interrogating the cosmonaut. A key plot point in “Little Orpheus” concerns the disappearance of the atomic bomb that powers the astronauts’ ship.
“While Little Orpheus was originally released on Apple Arcade in June 2020 and is not directly related to recent world events, we understand that some of the game’s themes and content may be frustrating for players at this time,” Secret Mode said in a blog post that he will share more information later.
The tone of “Little Orpheus” could easily be described as tongue-in-cheek, referring to the propaganda language of the Cold War era, but the inevitable comparisons to the real Russia come at a time of great social unrest, especially when it comes to the possible outbreak of war in Eastern Europe.
As of March 1, about 680,000 Ukrainians have fled the country for Poland and other neighboring countries Al Jazeera. The Ukrainian Ministry of Health also said that 352 civilians, including 14 children, have died since the start of the Russian invasion. It is also reported that 1684 people were injured.
Little Orpheus was developed by The Chinese Room, the same studio that created “walking sim” classics like “Dear Esther” and “Everybody Gone Delighted” and Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs.
A number of Ukrainian game developers, as well as representatives of the gaming industry, urged to support Ukraine after the Russian invasion. In the entertainment world, major studios have begun to release films in Russia, including Batman, Morbius, and others, including Disney.
IGN gave The mobile version of Little Orpheus scored 8 out of 10 in our review. Stating that its “great story and captivating underworld offset the ease of side-scrolling platformer gameplay and make for one of the best games on Apple Arcade.”
Joseph Knoop is a writer/producer for IGN.