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Short but unsettling game - what happened here? Come find out...

  • b0yflea
  • 06/06/2017 04:02 PM
Game Title: Ayda, by Raikuden

Synopsis: You are unwell. Very unwell. You have to keep taking medicine to avoid seeing terrible visions. But your housemate, Ayda, she is far worse: can you save them both from this nightmare?

Story: Set in a claustrophobic house of locked doors, unfinished meals, mysterious pasts and uncertain futures, you play the role of an anonymous girl who is determined to save her friend, Ayda. The puzzles are simple, everything is poured into the plot which is beautifully executed. Lights flicker on, scenes change, the narrative is depressing and despairing: and yet you are compelled to carry on. It is a disturbing piece, more art than game.
There are jump-scares to be had in scenery changes and random animations, explained in-part by the protagonist’s mental illness and craving for medicine.
You are left with a dreadful glimpse of this being the aftermath of something truly, truly awful: a terrible tragedy has unfurled just days before you begin to play. Every description , every detail is filled with depressive meaning. The whole game is melachony and you come away from the experience (about 10 minutes) quite saddened, regardless of whichever ending you manage to complete – but then you knew there would be no happy endings when you downloaded this game.

Gameplay: The game is simple, but you can explore the rich environment and interact with almost anything. This gives a rich feel to this game. Everything is selectable, and there are only a few items to pick-up.

Look and feel: Dark shadows, lots of blood, sinister setting and disjointed musical score. Perfect for this piece.

Summary: It feels too short! You are left wanting far more than is shown here, and can only wish that there are more episodes to come, given on how much is left unanswered in this game.
As a rating, I would give this 4.0 / 5.0. It is a great example of how to build atmosphere by paying attention to the small details to drive the large plot forward.