Please, Don't Touch Anything Review

Screenshot of Please, Don't Touch Anything
Papers, Please.

  • Reviewed by: Mark Goninon
  • Developer: Four Quarters
  • Publisher: Escalation Studios
  • Release Date: 27 March 2015
  • Time played: 1.2 hours

Wow, this must be the quickest turnaround from me receiving/purchasing a game to reviewing it. I managed to grab this game several days ago for my birthday thanks to my generous brother (cheers bro!) and after checking whether it was a short game or not on, I decided to dive right into it.

So how to describe this game? Well it's a bit hard to without spoiling the experience but you're basically told to mind an ominous machine with a large red button while the colleague that normally mans the station goes to the toilet. He obviously commands you to "please, don't touch anything" before he goes, but do you ultimately be a good boy scout and listen to what he has to say or do you push that red button (come on! You know you want to ;))? The game offers multiple endings and some are quite challenging to get than others - and that's pretty much all I can say about the game without spoiling it further!

What I like:


There are quite a few pop culture references and memes in the game so if you're into that sort of stuff, you're bound to get a few laughs here and there. By far my favourite has to be the ending associated with Papers, Please.

Retro graphics

Retro pixelart graphics aren’t for everyone but I quite like it.

Retro Music

I love chiptune music and this game doesn’t disappoint in that department. If you end up really liking the soundtrack composed by blinch, you can purchase it for $2.99 USD.

Steam Trading Cards and Achievements

Yep. The game happens to have Steam Trading Cards and Steam Achievements. Nuff' said.

What I dislike:

Trial and error gameplay

While it does take some intelligence to solve a few of the puzzles, there are some that seem only possible if you use trial and error to determine how to proceed next (e.g. click something X times and it unlocks something else). I was able to solve maybe five of the puzzles after playing the game for 20 minutes before resorting to a walkthrough to see what was left to experience.

Underwhelming endings

The game is basically an experiment or a toy. The whole point of the game is to unlock as many endings as you can by finding the right combination of clicks and button presses. There are 25 endings in the game but they generally consist of a short animation and some background music, and that's it. It's very much a quantity over quality kind of game. Another problem with the game is once you've unlocked the endings, there's not much reason to go back because the game...

Lacks plot

Plot isn't everything but usually in visual novels or Choose Your Own Adventures, they're pretty damn important. Considering this game uses a mechanic similar to those games (i.e. allowing you to explore numerous paths to reach different endings) you would hope there'd be some coherent narrative that the player could sink their teeth into. Doesn't seem to be the case here.

Score – 6/10 (Okay)

If you like nutting out difficult puzzles more than anything else, to the point where it doesn't matter if there's no plot, it doesn't matter if the endings are short and unfulfilling, and it doesn't matter if you're unlikely to ever replay the game again, then Please, Don't Touch Anything might be worth a try. I mean the game has a sweet chiptune soundtrack (if you're into retro game music) plus there are a couple of funny pop culture references/memes in there to boot, so it's not all bad, but overall, it's probably not my sort of game (despite Steam saying everything' is awesome...).

Is the game worth $4.99 USD?: No. A fairer price would be $5 AUD considering the game is short and only entertaining some of the time.

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[ LINK: Please, Don't Touch Anything Steam Store Page ]