I consider myself to be a kind person. Not a perfect person, but kind. I have a lot of empathy. I like to think I actively work to make a difference in the lives of a select few others. This isn’t intended to be a boast but more like an explanation as to why a game like ‘Kind Words’ appeals to people like me. It came across my feed this morning as “games people like you play” and there was a sale going on for it. The game is ‘older’ having been released back in 2019, but with the pandemic and all sorts of world craziness going on, I can see the appeal.
It’s less game play and more community orientated. You can write letters to people, anonymously, and people can respond. You get stickers, a little room to hang out in, and decorations. There’s music. At the time of writing this I haven’t actually played so I’m not able to give actual gameplay experience but I read reviews that bring up some good points.
Games like this are not a replacement for therapy. There are some people out there writing about very serious issues that need a professional to help them with. That can make the game seem very heavy, reading actual letters from people that are absolutely heartbreaking. The inability to actually help more than responding with kind words is something a few players spoke about – especially if you’re a fixer (someone who likes to fix problems). You might find this sort of gameplay distressful.
Then there’s the fact that this is the internet. While there IS a community surrounding Kind Words, there’s also trolls and children and people responding inappropriately (you can report) or responding with ‘i love you’ and stuff like this. That doesn’t mean there’s no value in the game, but that you need to be aware and take it all with a grain of salt.
I think the fact that we live in a time period where games like this exist at all, is wonderful. There are so many options to do good out there, and I appreciated the reminder that sometimes all it takes is a few kind words.
That’s not a substitution for doing greater good, either. It’s just one small thing that takes a few minutes where you can make a difference in someone else’ life. Or maybe someone can make a difference in yours if you’re having a bad day.