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Free game alert!

Relive 2020 in all its 8-bit glory on this fun, free side scroller

By Kara Santos Published Jan 19, 2021 3:07 am

Most of us are so over the awful year that was 2020. You’ve got to admit, living through last year felt like we were watching a disaster movie unfold right before our eyes. 

While most poeple would rather forget 2020, reliving the madness becomes surprisingly fun in 2020 Game, a free web-based side scroller that offers a lighthearted take on major events including the Australia wildfires, COVID-19, stock market crash, the US elections and more.

Originally spotted by The Verge, this well-designed and creative game that has you dodging coronaviruses, hoarding toilet paper, and stuck in enforced quarantine at home, is a brilliant take on the horrors of 2020.

Awesome is not a word anyone would use to describe last year but this game makes it actually look good. The whole game is rendered in cute pixel art graphics with a soundtrack reminiscent of early side scrollers. 

It will take you only a few minutes to play to the end, plus it’s free on desktop and mobile platforms, so it’s definitely worth checking out. 


2020 Game is the work of Max Garkavyy, who developed it alone over the course of six months and released it online on January 1, 2021. 

Each level takes the form of a major event or trend from last year, starting in the peaceful and idyllic 2019 and diving right into the dreadful year of 2020 with a battle to save koalas from raging wildfires in Australia. It gets more challenging once COVID-19 kicks in.

The game manages to pack a lot of references to major events last year, including cinema closures, a graffiti artwork tribute to George Floyd, the US Elections race and even a brief TikTok dance interlude, poking fun at the rise of the short-form social media platform. 

While the game is free to play, the developer is open to donations. On the game's website, Garkavyy asks for donations so that he can "quit his job to pursue his dreams."

“I currently work at a boring office job in a big corporation and every day I wonder if I should take the plunge and quit my job to pursue making games. Do you think I should? 2020 Game is the attempt to prove to myself that I can pay the bills with my games, so the fact that you want to support me means a world to me!” writes Garkavyy.

As of this writing, the game creator has raised $24,883.95 of his $30,000 goal. By the looks of it, 2021 the sequel could be pretty promising.

Check it out for yourself and see if you can you survive 2020 all over again by playing the game here: 

(Images via 2020 Game)