Delicate subject matters such as mental health have played a greater role in video games recently. The previous EA Originals title, Sea of Solitude, is one of the bravest examples of this. Not only did it explore depression and loneliness, it did so in some very unique and creative ways. It Takes Two - the latest entry to the EA Originals catalogue - continues the trend of relating to real life struggles. This time the focus is on married life, parenthood and divorce.
For married couple Cody and May, it's not quite a match made in heaven. Your immediately thrown into one of their arguments, as they stress about work and pressure of raising their daughter Rose. They decide the only option is to split up. In devastation, Rose heads to her hideout with the aid of two handmade dolls and self-help book. She wishes her parents stay together, dropping tears on the dolls in the process. Magically, this transports her parents into the dolls that represented them. Cody is now a chubby clay figure, while May is made of wood and dressed in knitted clothing. After freaking out over becoming pint-sized dolls, they must endeavour to work as a team and find a way to break the spell.
Although the premise deals with a delicate subject, the game is far from emotional. The journey is complete bonkers, and plays out more like a rom-com. The bickering between Cody and May is some of the most natural and witty writing I've seen in a game. They seem like a real couple arguing, and for the most part, the voice acting is solid. What's not so great are the frequent interruptions by Dr. Hakim, a self-help talking book. These are basically theory sessions, as he teaches them about collaboration. These moments attempt to provide some humour and charm, but I found them awkward and uncomfortable. His inclusion also feels unnecessary too, as Cody and May provide enough charm themselves.
Developer - Hazelight Studios Publisher - EA Originals Platform - Xbox, PlayStation, PC Release : Out Now