A Little To The Left

A Little To The Left

Who wants to tidy up the virtual world?

A Little to the Left

Sometimes you just need to chill and have five minutes to yourself and for many, gaming is a portal to this relaxing place.  But sometimes you don’t want to fight off the hordes or be thrown into the heat of a battle.  This is where “cozy” games take centre stage with their laid-back gameplay and chilled out vibes.  It’s a genre that is a bit new to me, but I am finding myself drawn to these titles more and more to wind down after an evening of racing, slaying and just trying to survive.  A Little to the Left is developed by Canadian studio Max Inferno that feeds off anyone that has OCD about how things go; as you’ll be sorting, stacking, and organizing household items across its 100+ puzzles.

Right off the bat, this is far from a thrill ride with it being an extremely laid-back affair; where you get to go at your own pace from puzzle to puzzle, all of which has a very satisfying conclusion.  The game kicks off very simply by having to straighten a picture up and then arrange items into a basket and so on and so on.  As you move through things, it sneakily ramps up the challenge on the fly from adding in extra ways to complete levels, to making the solutions just that little bit harder to see right away.  In no way think that the game will stop you stone cold in your tracks, as there is a handy help system that will give you hints on how to complete the puzzle and if that all fails you can aways skip it completely with no penalty.  Now those looking for a tale here across its five chapters may be a bit let down, there is no real tale beyond having to keep an eye out for a mischievous white cat – who has a tendency to cause chaos and well… just get in the way on some puzzles.  Which is a bit of a shame as looking at the game odds are you’ll get strong vibes of the surprising hit Unpacking, which had similar puzzles, but also a heart felt tale about the impact of moving and the like.  Whereas A Little to the Left seems more about the puzzles than any tale.

A Little to the Left is at its best when you are tidying up and putting things in their right home and for the most part there are lots of levels like this.  There are a few levels that mix things up with mixed results; like having to clip the leaves of a plant to make it symmetrical, but in the right order or have to arrange objects to make a symmetrical image.  These styles of puzzles feel more like you’re having to work out the solution the developers want you to use, rather than being able to just use your own trial and error skills to work it out.  Beyond the main game there is the Daily Tidy: a 24-hour single level, that takes elements from the main game and remixes it for a bit of a fresh challenge each day.  There is also DLC available called Cupboards & Drawers and its is more focused on the tidying side of things.

Visually the game has a very striking art style with an almost painting or chalk sketch feel to it all, which makes everything clear to see and easy to understand.  Sound-wise the selection of audio is nice, if a little garden centre on a Sunday afternoon for myself, but nothing beats the chime of completing a puzzle… very satisfying.  As for issues with the game you can feel that it’s a port of a PC title, from just how twitchy the controls are with a controller, giving an overriding vibe that a mouse is the best option.  Not unplayable, but more annoying than anything as you have to wrestle some objects into place at times.  A Little to the Left is a bit like your granny’s old sewing box you’d find when raking about her living room, it’s full of wonders and little delights… but also things you have no idea what they are.  It’s a chilled laid-back puzzler that is perfect if you’re looking to have 5 minutes to yourself.

An Xbox review copy of A Little to the Left was provided by Max Inferno’s PR team, and the game is out now on Xbox, PC, Switch and PlayStation for around £5.

The Verdict


The Good: Peaceful atmosphere | Satisfying puzzle solutions | Daily Puzzles keeps bringing you back

The Bad: Not very optimized for a controller | Some puzzles stray from the core idea a little too much

The following two tabs change content below.

Stuart Cullen

Scotland’s very own thorn in the side of the London gaming scene bringing all the hottest action straight from The Sun… well… The Scottish Sun at least, every week!

Latest posts by Stuart Cullen (see all)

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *