Perfect Vermin is an action horror game in which you search an office building for “vermin”. In practice, this means taking a sledgehammer and smashing any piece of furniture that seems out of place. Each level has a certain number of vermin that must be eliminated, usually within a 90 second time limit.
The destruction mechanics are fantastic. Smashing an object feels satisfying and impactful. It’s difficult to talk about the gameplay without spoiling anything, especially for a ~15 game, but it’s definitely fun to play during its short runtime.
The game’s atmosphere is equally great, with an ominous, cryptic plot that is only explained at the end of the game. Before that point, you are dripfed small hints that don’t give anything away, but point you in the right direction. It’s a horror game, but it doesn’t have jump scares. The game’s horror elements are mostly present in the creepy, off-putting visuals. The art style fits the gameplay so well that you don’t notice that the graphics aren’t amazing on a technical level.
Storywise, Perfect Vermin plays out like a mystery. You are dropped into this strange world and you don’t know what to do. Your location isn’t explained, the world you live in isn’t explained, even the gameplay isn’t truly explained. Obviously the ending puts the whole game into a new context, but the journey there is almost perfect. It’s rare that a game with a great story has such strong gameplay, but Perfect Vermin manages to pull it off, albeit only for 15 minutes.
I would highly recommend Perfect Vermin to nearly anyone. It’s a unique experience that is well worth 15 minutes of your time. Content is lacking, but that goes hand in hand with free indie games.