Whether you just moved here yesterday or have been settled for several years, we are all familiar with the joys of dish hunting in Berlin. I’m sure we’ve all heard the horror stories, the scam stories, the funny stories, and even the nudist stories.
And now that flat collective research experience has been turned into a cathartic hilarious online game known as Berlin Flat Quest.
Created by Bastien, the man who runs the Settle in Berlin blog, Berlin Flat Quest commemorates this rite of passage by combining the flat research stories of people collected from the Facebook group Berlin expats.
The first thing you see when you open the game is the gorgeous 8-bit Oberbaumbrücke illustration set against a sunset background and the classic yellow U-Bahn running across the screen.
When you click on the prompts, you start to create your player profile, which introduces you to some typical Berliner stereotypes, including the “Creative Talent” and “David Dowie” characters.
Bastien also takes the opportunity to include a social commentary on the state of housing in Berlin with the character of the Qatari prince and a large red “coming soon” tag.
“The subtext here is that the big investment firms are buying the city, and soon the Qatari princes are coming as well,” Bastien said.
Next are your character details, including whether you have a German or foreign name, and how good your Schufa is. The difficulty level for the next part of the game is determined by these selections – a subtle way to solve some social issues and educate newcomers on the factors to consider when looking for an apartment in Berlin.
Inspired by games such as Start-up simulator, Stupid ways of dying and Dev Tycoon game, Berlin Flat Quest combines shooting games, role-playing games and storylines to bring you the flat search experience in an entertaining format. It’s funny, delicious, frustrating, and maybe a little too close to home for some of us!
Bastien said some players even contacted him to say: “I had to stop for a second [while playing] because physically I am that character in this game! As well as comments like “the address I got is actually two houses on my street!”
Obviously, this game speaks to a lot of us as it hits the nail on the head with jokes inside that only Berliners will understand. As Bastien puts it, the game is “cathartic and brings common relief,” providing a sense of community as we realize that we are all in the same boat with our collective experiences.
After my first game, I now live in a nudist roommate in Mitte and owe the owner thousands of euros. Let us know what you ended up in the comments!
You can find more information about Berlin Flat Quest here.
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