My Lucky Day is a grim, experimental game that examines the psychology behind playing the lottery and how it relates to advertising, our dreams, and our realities.
Much of My Lucky Day’s story is told silently through its art direction. The game opens on a gorgeous beachside paradise, where you have nothing to do but relax with a drink in your hand. But this dream world cannot last forever and before long, the incessant beeping of your alarm clock drags you awake. The vivid hues and relaxing sounds of your dream are replaced by the grimy greys and drab browns of real life. This is where the “game” really begins.
My Lucky Day uses a very pared-down point-&-click adventure system to move the “every man” character through the world. In fact, the game is really only interactive when the character gives in to escapism, specifically when he is dreaming and when he is playing the lottery. My Lucky Day is very slowly paced but that decision was a purposeful one. Moving the character through his daily rituals can be agonizingly boring, helping to emphasize how dull his life seems in relation to his dream life. Even the advertisements in the game imply that his life lacks flavor. “Don’t you want more?” they seem to say. “Don’t you deserve more?” It is hardly remarkable then that when the character sits down at the end of the day to see the winning lottery numbers announced, you — as the player — experience the same thrill that he does. After all, you want him to win because his winning means that you win.
Even if you are not a lottery player in real life, My Lucky Day still manages to pose some interesting questions. As gamers, we share a certain kinship with gamblers and many of the questions that apply to gamblers apply to us as well. Do we only play to win? Or is there value to be had just in playing? And where does escapism transition from idle pass time to toxic obsession? At the end of the day, My Lucky Day acknowledges the very human desire for a fantasy life, but it doesn’t shy away from criticizing the problems that come from perpetually waiting for something better to come along. It is a game worth experiencing, to be sure.
UPDATE: This Game Is No Longer Available