Games of 2022: Melatonin was the best chance to manifest

We don’t really get that many rhythm games when you think about it. There are some that are really great, and understandably many people’s overall favourites, such as Rez, Sayonara Wild Hearts, Audiosurf, and Thumper. And I think the reason for this relative scarcity is a simple one: it’s so dang hard to make a good rhythm game. So you can imagine my excitement when a new one, arriving just as the year wraps up, caught my eye.

Melatonin is a different type of rhythm game, one where you don’t necessarily travel through an abstract environment to physically reach a goal at the end of a route. Made by a one-man band, the game explores the life of a young, drifting average joe, via a spontaneous nap through his dreams and waking life.

The first thing you’ll notice is the welcoming cozy game aesthetic of the soft pastels that make up Melatonin’s colour scheme. The game is split into five chapters, with each one letting you visit inner worlds that revolve around an activity (like going to the gym or using dating apps) or a theme (like work and money). The simple tutorial follows up with a helpful practice mode before you begin each level. This is handy as the speed and even specific buttons you have to hit to the timing of the beat changes. I cranked up the different accessibility settings to make life easier.

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