Donut County presents a simple concept to players: collect objects to make a hole larger until the entire stage is clear. Done poorly, no one would remember the experience whatsoever. Developer Ben Esposito turns something mechanically simplistic into a joy via smart design. The adorable world inhabited by colorful characters is something we desperately need more of in games. Donut County might not be a long experience, but it’s one that players can’t help but cherish.
Other than that one slight niggle, though? Donut County - as quirky and unusual as it is - is a sublime experience that skillfully balances simplistic puzzles with a charming story and affable cast. No, it's not the most cerebral adventure and no, there's not much longevity here - you're pretty much done and dusted within a couple of hours - but if you're looking for a gentle, unassuming game for a lazy Sunday or a weekday commute, you could do much worse than invest a few pounds and while away an hour or two in Donut County.
It may be a very short diversion, but Donut County is a delight. It’s absolutely brimming with personality, has a killer soundtrack and visual aesthetic, and is based on an irresistible gameplay hook. I’d have loved more, but I guess I’ll just settle for playing through it again.
Donut County is a short experience, clocking in at about two hours, but it’s a lean two hours free of extraneous gameplay. I enjoyed every level, but the lack of depth means the goofy premise of sucking a town underground piece by piece doesn’t feel fully explored by the end. I wanted to use the hole in larger locations and use its excellent physics to solve more complicated puzzles.
The world is your playground in Donut County, and yet it’s the most wholesome way to see everything come crashing down. Despite some serious setbacks, the characters remain optimistic and retain a healthy sense of resolve. Listening to each of them tell their stories feels like hanging with a big group of friends. If a hole destroyed my town today, I think I’d be okay with it. It’s not the hole’s fault.