Well this is Awkward is a game that seeks to teach us through it's clever and bitingly real to life story. Ostensibly about the simple adventures of a girl going out to purchase condoms for her significant other and the resulting hijinks that ensue, Awkward is in actuality a deeper look into how relationships, sex, and the larger world's view of them all work in the 21st Century.
At least, that's what it tries to be. Indeed, it's not so much that Well this is Awkward fails to hit those notes, it's simply that the game is given no real time to develop them. I "won" the game in roughly ten minutes. That short time isn't enough for a pizza to get delivered, yet alone enough time to make a lasting statement on sex in the 2000's.
All of which is a shame, because there is something to Awkward. It's there in it's piercingly funny inner monologue for the games protagonist. Simultaneously brutal in its critiques, utterly confused in any attempt to help, and ultimately showing the dread and feeling of hopelessness that comes with our young heroine's task.
The inner monologue is fantastic and captures the way so many of us think and feel in our lives. We are always harder, more demanding, and prone to overthinking tiny things then others are, and Awkward captures all of the cringe-worthy details perfectly.
Which is good, because the inner monologue and the debate you have with it is the vast majority of what the game ends up being. There isn't any gameplay, you're not controlling the characters, instead Well this is Awkward almost works as a Telltale choose your own adventure, without any of the gameplay and awkward controls and movements that go with it. This is a game that is streamlined and laser focused on the game it wants to be and it is a game perfectly suited to it.
The problem as I said earlier, is that the game is just too short. Awkward, doesn't need to be and shouldn't be, some 15 hour long epic, that's both unrealistic and laughable. However, the simple truth is that it's short story handicaps it from being fully able to tell the wonderful story I'm sure it could deliver. You get a feel for some of the large narrative and themes that the game wants to push, but its quick ten minute playtime is a deadweight that forces it to abandon a larger focus on this. I'm sure some will be happy about this or won't have a problem at all, but for me that larger narrative and critique of our modern day culture was when the game shined brightest.
Well this is Awkward than is a game of unfilled promise, yet it's also a game that is quite remarkable in how funny, sarcastic, and cringe-worthy it is. This is a game that will truly make you laugh and smile. This is a game that tell's a story from a point of view you might not have considered, but that makes it feel so universal, so relatable, that you can't help but feel for the games protagonist. It makes you nostalgic for something you never thought possible. It's crazy that the game is free, it's crazy that this kind of game got made at all, it's crazy that the whole thing is only ten minutes. There's a lot that's different, a lot that's odd about Well this is Awkward, but it's handling of such a funny and personal event, well that's simply wonderful.