“Order and sense are the primary predator of doodles, in fiction as in life. Ballpoint doesn’t harp on detail in its storytelling, thankfully. It gives you a tiny bit of setup before letting the world speak for itself, and the beautiful chaos carries the player along from there. This is a place where army boots chew cigars and fight laser-shooting eyeballs—which are, for their part, piloting pears.”
The Mysterious Penitentes
First described by Charles Darwin in literature in 1839, penitentes are rare, unique snow formations found at high altitudes above 4,000 meters on the Andes mountains. They are called “penitentes” because the white spikes resemble processions of white-hooded monks. They take the form of tall thin blades of hardened snow, or ice, with the blades pointing towards the general direction of the sun. Penitentes range in size from several centimeters to over 5 meters tall.
They are rare because they only appear in the dry Andes Mountain region on the border of Argentina and Chile. It is believed their formation is due to strong winds. This was Darwin’s explanation and no one has come up with a better one for their existence in over 170 years.