Books grounded me, helped me to feel less alone. Technically I was around people all the time on tour, but often I felt estranged from my band mates, unknown. Perhaps this was depression, a murkiness that distorted and disabled connection. I drifted in and out of this darkness, pulled away, then reappeared.
Carrie Brownstein, “Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl.”
Why Try It: Uses the conventions and imagery of role-playing games to tell a compelling and unusual story.
Author’s Notes: “Growing up with hideous images is not so bad; the irritation becomes a pearl and terrible dreams are a comfort, the path to the real thing, showing you the way before you knew what the way was. It’s all weird silly childhood nightmares from decades old disposable entertainment but it still lodged itself in my brain like it meant something and now I just can’t help it. Now it lives and it is part of me and I have built layers and layers around it and I have rearranged it from an awful little thought into part of me, and here is the story of that grain of sand, small and alive in me still”
From the forest ambassador: Aevee Bee also runs ZEAL, ‘a micro zine of critical essays on the least talked about games worth talking about.’
Why Try It: A quiet, simple interactive experience that tells a story through player involvement and light dialogue.
Mood: Atmospheric / Introspective
Author’s Notes: “Let your feelings out and see what happens. Take your time. You’ll probably get as much out of it as you put into it. Things will happen besides typing. The game is based on experiences I had as a kid, hiding away on the computer in a rough home. ”
This is a piece called Illusions….. because I feel like my dreams blur so much these days into the waking hours that I can’t see between them….. I see him, but our paths will never cross…..and my heart mourns that fact….
This is what I imagine that feeling sounds like.
(My first ever proper piano composition, so I’m kinda nervous… I decided to make a Soundcloud just for them, since my other is getting pretty full.)
Why Try It: A compelling, branching, illustrated personal narrative.
Author’s Notes: “Be careful what you say. In this conversation simulator, everyone will remember every dialogue option you pick, and your choices drive the story. This game is semi-autobiographical. You play as a fictionalized version of this game’s author in the year 2010, during a night that changed their life forever. If that seems confusing or awkward, well, that’s the gist of being forced to come out to one’s parents, isn’t it?”
From the forest ambassador: Check out Nicky Case’s other work, including the previously-featured Nothing to Hide, at ncase.me.
Why Try It: A tender, aching bundle of related short stories about anime, time travel, and caring for oneself.
Author’s Notes: “ANIME HELL 1995 is a twine game about depression, self-hate, time travel, dopplegangers, being sucked into a fantasy world, and more, all within the context of the VHS tape hell of 1995. 5 stories total, with the fifth unlocked after you play through the initially available four.”