This game was made in around two weeks for the Theme Roulette 2 event.
What to expect
This is a horror story in the classic style of the early 20th century, in which a life gradually descends from normality into strangeness. Despite the warnings on the game page that it is part of a larger universe, it works fine as a standalone. There are likely references that will make the story more enjoyable to a player familiar with the other works. However only bits of the ending seemed to directly refer to outside context.
The story is fairly linear with no combat and light puzzles, like the Sokoban minigame from Zorga's previous work "Sweet Middleground".
Interpretation of Theme
The theme prompt for this game was the word "curse" and the image of a swimming pool. The swimming pool that is a central feature of the story, and the custom tile work has been closely based on that image. A "curse" could fit the story as well.
Graphics & mapping
The interior of the sports centre is all custom tiles based on the tones of the image, with extra gym equipment and locker room areas in a matching style. Some of the tiles look a bit rushed, which is understandable given the time limit.
There are hand drawn busts for characters in dialogue, like the lifeguard who can be seen on the game page.
Unimportant NPCs have grey silhouettes on the map. I felt that style worked better in a romance game like Sweet Middleground than in a horror game like this. However making sprites for everyone in a short timespan would have been an unreasonable ask.
If you like your horror spooky, and don't mind games more towards the "walking simulator" end of things gameplay wise, you'll likely enjoy this.
Investigating the scene would make a good tabletop RPG scenario if that's your thing, too.
Thank you so much for taking the time to play and write this. And on top of that, I'm glad you found that it worked. I'm really grateful.
I'll keep the silhouettes and rushed tiles info in mind for future projects.