Where We Remain


Patrickwhere we remain screenshotWhere We Remain, the debut offering of Twofold Secret, is a quiet game. It has the allure of that person sitting across the room that you make eye contact with but never speak to, or of the woods that taunted you as a child. It is also an action adventure game of exploration in a randomly generated world. You're a lost youth stranded on a haunted island in the Aegean Sea, searching for your lost love among the ruins of a wasted civilization stalked by mysterious spirits. Twofold Secret borrows the formula from another popular action adventure game and brings back the sense of curiosity and loneliness, and with panache.

[Arrow] keys move you around in all directions, reliable as they have ever been. There are no other controls. The whole game is based on the arrow keys in the same way that drinking water is based simply on swallowing. You find yourself alone on a vast island, messages and flowers are strewn about, caves dot the cliff sides, and unspeakable phantoms stalk the plains, causing the wind to shudder and the earth to tremble. Inside the caves are power-ups (10 in all) and notes left over from a missing lover that you desperately have to find, and let's not forget the shades of the dead who banish you outside when you lack flower petals to ward them off. Eventually you will find your true love, but perhaps not in the way you had imagined.

where we remain screenshot 2Analysis: The authors, Chris Klimas and Joel Haddock, have taken the traditional exploration dynamic of the Zelda series and created something the original Legend of Zelda had but its myriad successors lacked: a sense of free exploration fused with solitude. Somehow, most action-adventure games fell to the lure of putting you on rails, and when they did you lost the sense of being alone in a haunted world. Your hands were held between power-ups and boss battles, a simulated adventure rather than an adventure simulator. Now, after years of indie games re-making the platformer genre, we're starting to see exploration games get the same treatment, Where We Remain is a glorious rallying shot.

One thing I really love about this game, moreso than other "artsy" fare that we've seen in the past few years, is that it doesn't try to shove any messages down your throat. It respects your subjectivity enough to let you draw your own conclusions and, more importantly, to let you own the sense of discovery when you tease out each of the secret endings. The freedom in the gameplay reflects this austerity, you get to play and the artistic aspects that the authors so lovingly imbued are there if you want them, there's no forcing of your hand. Fitting that, the game is randomly generated each time you play, so the core task of exploration never gets fully exhausted. The lack of any music makes the sound effects stand out, the building of the changing winds, then the tremors, followed by the "baaaaannn" that alerts you to imminent danger, it follows a primal procession from childhood nightmares where we would turn off the dream-lights in our dream-kitchen and summon the ghosts we feared. The randomization of the island, with its never-ending well of imperfect information, keeps these chases fresh, and there really is something at stake in these encounters: you could lose your entire progress. The lack of music also underscores a sense of apprehension when you aren't under pressure, you're left to wonder at why you're doing these things, like the horse-riding segments of Shadow Of The Colossus but with gameplay. These are just a sample of the subtle details that make this game a holistic whole.

If you find yourself still sitting in the chair you were in before reading this review, congratulations, because I'm still in the same chair after writing it, these chairs are Where We Remain.

Play Where We Remain

Walkthrough Guide


(Please allow page to fully load for spoiler tags to be functional.)

For those of you who don't feel like losing a dozen or so times to hear the story I figure I'll transcribe all the tablets/notes. Not sure they're in the right order, but you can figure 'em out yourself, right?

Records of the Island

...These are the records of the island we name Polykotes, in our hundred-and-thirteenth year. We have no archon to reckon our year by. Instead we remember the first year we landed on this shore, and count the hard deeds that keep us alive and our settlements thriving...

...On the fifth day of Skirophiron each year, we gather in the largest of the halls we have constructed to celebrate the year's gifts, the plentiful harvest, the newborn children, the sunrise. We are a solemn people but even the thickest curtains must admit a little light. We drink and dance; all rules save one are suspended for the evening...

...We hear of wars taking place on the continent, but we do not trouble ourselves with them. We are forgotten by the world, and in turn we are allowed to forget it. Those who wish for a larger life may seek it for themselves. Nothing will stand between them and the sea. We have problems enough. We keep our children's eyes turned from the spirits so that they understand our mortal peril only when they are ready to. Living on the edge of oblivion is a heavy burden, but we share it evenly...

...We named the opastia that haunt our home island after the winds that bind them to each part of the island. They would devour us all if they could. We do not know why they hunger. There are some of us who have seen one eat a man, but none that would give voice to what they saw. Better for it to remain memory alone and not story. Our imaginations can satisfy us more than enough...

...Someone new to our land might ask why we have not slain the opastia that curse this island. They are impervious to any weapon fashioned by mortals, and pass as easily through our fortifications as a fish through the ocean. We have tried to reason with the opastia, or at least engage them in dialogue. But they do not respond to words at all. We do not think they understand language in even its most rudimentary form. We have never seen the spirits converse among themselves. They are, as far as we can understand, entirely unthinking beasts, driven by instinct and hunger...

...The opastia have existed on this island for as long as our memory extends, and many of us believe that they have existed long before mortal man. We speculate that this place was formed as a prison for them, a way to contain what could not be destroyed, even by the gods. But we should not venture to guess at what gods wrought, and why. We have life; we have breath; all else is a gift...

...Apollo watches over our herd. No opastia may tread in his house, and we have constructed many homes for him, so that our population covers nearly the entirety of our small island. We can sit at the edge of the Mediterranean and fish if we are mindful. We can grow wheat in the fields so long as watch is kept at each horizon. Our lives are simple ones, they are by necessity, but is there no better life than the one lived in devotion to the gods? Let the statues of Apollo that dot this island stand as testament to our constant virtue...

...Let it be remembered that on the seventeenth day of Boedromion, we laid an injunction on one of us, who in defiance of all convention, calls himself Xdrngy. We discovered he had been sneaking out of the settlements for several nights. He claims that he was only satisfying curiosity, that he wished to map the caves of our island in order to further our collected knowledge. But when asked to produce any such maps, he could not. Thus, he shall serve as an altar-servant until five winters have passed. He will eat nothing during time but what Apollo will grant him, drink nothing but what Apollo delivers to him, be nothing but dust until he learns to obey...

...The boy has destroyed us. He has broken the covenant we have held with Apollo as long as we have lived on this island. He has brought one of the opastia into our homestead and disjuncted our protection. Nowhere is safe for us. They are coming for us and there are few places for us to hide. We know what waits for us in the caves...

...Our settlements have been afire three days now. And yet we count this as a blessing, for the smoke, of all things, seems to keep the opastia from noticing our presence. Hunger has started to affect our minds. But there are much more worse things at hand...

...Those who are able-bodied should attempt to fashion rafts and set sail for Knossos. Those that cannot should take shelter where possible, to hide themselves from the opastia by whatever means present themselves. This is our final edict.

...We few who have remained behind struggle to record what we can in the time left to us. We number less than fifty. Most of us have fled to the coastline, to make passage to Knossos. We have no way of knowing how many of those have survived but we think the number low. The opastia move with terrifying alacrity now. They have been waiting decades to sate their hunger...

...We only number five now. We are likely the only living beings left on this island -- save for that cursed boy, that traitor, whose name we will not enscribe here. Let his name be forgotten. Let his deeds stand forever. We glimpse him walking with one of the infernal opastia. He seems utterly unaware of the destruction he has delivered unto us. He walks as if dreaming, as if he heard none of the screams, saw none of the fires. It is as if he only hears the screeches of his opastia companion, as if they are honeyed songs in his ears...

...Time is short. Remember us. There is darkness. Here it comes.

The Boy's records

...I engrave my story into this stone so that it might outlast my body. I write so we can be remembered once we are nothing but shades. I write so that my love for you may remain as the tides change, the moon wax and wane. As the stars follow their course. Let this story be constant; let everything else alter.

...I hope my testaments will become mixed with the official records of this island. I want our story to replace the tallies of grain, the endless births and deaths described only by names, useless names -- I want all prose to be replaced by our song...

...It was you who first called to me. I heard your song while working in my father's fields, on the hottest day of the year. There is no colder water than your voice. I walked the forbidden caves, I eluded the shades the gods placed there to keep mortal men from finding you. I succeeded where no others did before because I loved you, I loved you even before I knew you...

...I have had no women before you, and none shall come after you. You are my only, my song without end. I dream of your golden hair and wake with a smile that cannot be broken. The world is a shadow. I am a dreamer. In the contours of your face I glimpse what is real...

...We were lying together, not speaking. I could see a trickle of moonlight in the cave ahead of us. You were sleeping, but only fitfully. Dreams never clung to you the way they do to me. When you woke, I asked about your family. It was the one thing we never discussed. Finally you said: I have two brothers and one sister, and I hope I never see any of them ever again. I kissed you because I was afraid you were angry at me; I never thought to ask about your parents...

...They placed their punishment on me. Five years' labor at the shrines. I could not let that happen to me. Your absence for that long would be a death sentence. I killed three men today as I escaped. Let my guilt be repeated into eternity, let my shame carry across the earth. But please -- please fill my ears, my heart, my soul with your song. Make me forget the thing I have done today...

...I will wait until dawn before committing myself to this decision. I will not sleep. I will think deeply on it. I was raised, like everyone else, to believe the elders' word is supreme. It is one thing to hide from it. It is another to defy it. But I must. I will not stay hidden forever in these caves. I will take you by the hand and lead you into the light. We will force them to recognize our love; we will break all the prophecies; we will shatter the gods' own laws.

The Girl's notes (without glasses)

Xdrngy, I am trapped on this island just as you are. Even worse. I'm being kept in a cave, but I don't know where exactly. I know you'll be able to find me. But beware. No one on this island is your friend. Already they are looking for you. Run. Caves mean safety.

I love you.

--Freya

Xdrngy, I miss you terribly. I wish I could say it in grander words than that, but I don't have your gift with language. You wrote me such poetry-- I know you don't remember it anymore.

The flowers you bring me are beautiful, but they carry a strong scent. The more you have, the easier the spirits can find you.

--Freya

Xdrngy, don't give up. Please, never give up. It was never your fate to become a warrior. It was never your way to kill.

There are several signs that a spirit is near; the wind grows stronger, the skies turn dark, and when it has nearly found you, the earth will begin to shake. It wants nothing but to kill you. You must find shelter as soon as you can. You cannot outrun the spirits for long.

--Freya

Xdrngy, please keep trying. You will find me sooner than you think. You are close to me even now. I can feel your presence. I always will.

There are shrines scattered across this island that can protect you from the spirits. If you are clever, you can use them to hide from the spirits; if you are more clever you can use them to banish the spirits... I know you will be able to discover how to do it.

--Freya

Just a little further, Xdrngy.

As you explore the caves of the island you'll make a map of where you've visited. There is a way to learn what caves you have yet to explore as well.

--Freya

The Girl's notes (with glasses) - thank you to KingfisherEyes

1. I am sorry, Key. If I could make amends by filling every page I write with that sentence I would. But you deserve an explanation. I hope one day you will be ready to read it. And I pray you will forgive me once you do.

I'm not sure anyone can understand what I had done. No one has suffered under the god's hands as we did. My brothers at least, were allowed to live in the sun. The gods distrusted my sister and me because we had intelligence above our bothers, and bound us to the underground. By the time I met you, I had forgotten even the sound of waves, even the sweet smell of saltwater.

-- Freya.

2. We were helpless without mortal help. My sister thought we would never escape; she fled deeper into the caves. I haven't seen her in
many years. I held to the hope that someone would be brave enough to venture into the caves.

You and I were the happiest of accidents, Key. People will write that I ensorcellled you with my charms. But I never possessed that magic. I can change the story your eyes tell you, but I cannot alter your heart.

Please remember: everything I've done is out of love for you. Every wrong I've worked was formed from affection.

-- Freya.

3. You led me out of the caves into the light but I didn't know what price that would hold. I didn't know that what bound me to the caves also kept my dull brothers in check. The balance managed on tiptoes was destroyed forever.

It was terrible. I cast what charms I could to turn your eyes from the slaughter around us, but I could not keep it up forever. I could not bear for you to know what you had caused. You are innocent, Key. Where there is blame, place it on me.

Come Home.

--Freya

4. The Island was in ruins. Everyone you'd known had died. My brothers were uncontrollable. Like Babies with butterflies trapped in their hands. I couldn't cloud your eyes to what had happened forever. Instead I invented a fantasy for us to play, a game of hide-and-seek.

You were meant to be a hero. And in this story we make together, you are one. You are the one that finds me in darkness; you are the one that carries me out of it. It doesn't matter whether your deeds are real or not. What you believe matters more than the world.

-- Freya.

5. Everything has meaning. Flowers denote love. The island is the earth. Games are Life. The only thing here without antecedent is death. When my brothers find you, I keep them from harming you. You will always succeed here. It's only a matter of time before you find me when we play. I've lost count of how many times now. Years it must be now.

I wish we could have been ordinary. But wishes are only a way to name what will always be beyond our grasp. A game is enough.

-- Freya

Definitely have all the girl's notes. Pretty sure I have the full island's history. Less sure about the boy's history. Definitely not sure if they're in the right order. Make of it what you will

XD

93 Comments

Wow. That was... good. At first I didn't really know what was going on and lost quickly... Then, try number 2, I won rather quickly... My third try I decided to explore more... It was definitely more fun. I have to say that

The fear that I felt when the thunder sounded, and later the relief that I felt when I realized exactly what the ankh does, were together just surreal.

I think I will come back to this later and try for the other two endings.

And the comparison to Shadow of the Colossus is a good one. I remember before I knew what I was doing in that game, wandering around wondering whether something was going to happen, and then stumbling on the first colossus and getting the hejeebies scared out of me, followed by the feeling of sheer triumph when I slew it... It felt similar. Definitely both works of art.

A word of advice to everyone, EXPLORE. Also... flowers are good.

Oh and the story was good too... except I was too paranoid to sit around reading the notes.

Managed to find the girl in "beginner mode" with only two items:

The ankh (I still don't quite get what it does. Does it protect the charcter from the big monsters ?) and the orb that gives the location of the two big flying monsters.

First encounter was really scary (sounds, lights, images...) and I continue playing expecting every seconds to be the last.

Need to go back and finish it later :)

Oh my, the first encounter with the monster scared me to death. I wanted to stop and read the notes but I was too scared to.

I finished beginner mode with all of the items. Wish I had picked up more flowers though.

Rather than an adventure game, this feels more like a puzzle game, in the vein of Pac-Man, only with randomized labyrinths.

I like it, but how are you supposed take the time to read those stone tablets (I think) when you're surrounded by chasing death?

Great game, good story and nice sound effects.
Actually, there are more than four items...
(It differs each time you play.)

When I played it for 4 times now I found :

a compass - lets you see where the caves are (the light yellow ones are the caves that you have not yet explored and the dark ones are the caves you have explored

an ankh - it drives the monster that is chasing you (can only be used once though).

a sinister awareness orb

a shield-looking item with a red something on the middle - when you press two opposing arrow keys, it kinda teleports you.

the boots with wings - you will be faster but less agile

a blue key - unlocks a blue door (which I found in the medium difficulty).

Just loaded the page, but just one little thing about the naming screens before I actually dive in: Why is the player automatically assumed to be male?

Remind me again not to play this kind of games while having 5 memory hogs running on my pc: it makes fast controls - and therefore escape - impossible

This game appears to be made using Flixel, which was used to make 'Level Up'.

[Edit: Yep! And there's a tag for that. -Jay]

Seems like the most important item by far is the

orb that tells you where the flying monsters are. After you get that, you can use the positions of the monsters to make deductions about approximately where you are, and then by extension where the caves, door, etc. that you have found are located, all while avoiding the monsters. The only time I have been able to beat it on normal mode is when I found the orb early.
It also really helps matters if the random layout generator gives you the "hiding place shrines" in key locations!

Great game, you really have to play a few times to appreciate the depth. The random layouts are a great touch to give it that extra replay value.

I really enjoyed this game. It took me a while to get the 3rd ending but I learned a bit more of the story which turned out to be deeper than I thought. Rest of my comment in spoiler tags so I don't ruin anything.

After winning a few times, and thinking one of the hidden endings was bringing her lots of flowers; I took the hint and brought her none. But the game really became interesting when I used the glasses on some of the notes she left. Then on expert mode you will know what must be done. Check the hints section after you've played a while if you start to wonder what more is there... Also, not all items appear on each generation. I got lucky to win on expert by getting the displacer and the map piece, but there were no glasses on that level.

I want to see more games like this.

I couldn't get the

displacement power

to work.

I really enjoyed this game. Not at first, mind you, my initial impression was negative. I feel like a proper manual to read at the start would be appropriate. There are several clever mechanics in this game that players are unlikely to discover on their own.

Anyway, spoilers on details for Easy and Medium modes for those who want to discuss game design:

My experience:

My first few runs were on Normal Difficulty. I acquired a few items, but invariably I'd collect one or two items, encounter a spirit, escape for a while with fancy footwork, then die when I hit a dead-end. I really didn't enjoy the game all that much, as it wasn't clear to me there was much strategy to be had.

I played again on easy, and it was much easier. The ability to see my position on the map gave me a much better idea of the scope of the island. I also read the Hints guides at this time, and discovered the value of shrines, and hiding in the caves when being chased. This changed my perspective a bit. The lack of dead-ends in easy mode also makes the game much, much easier. I feel like the majority of player deaths come from running into a dead-end that you could have never known about beforehand.

After this, I played a few rounds on normal again. The notes in the caves gave me useful hints regarding flowers attracting the spirits, which struck me as a clever risk/reward mechanism. Sadly, when I finally beat the normal difficulty, it felt to me like I had simply lucked into an easy game (my first upgrade was the map, only inches from the start location, and shrines were very plentiful). I may play Hard later, now that I feel more comfortable with the game mechanics.

My feelings:

Lots of positives:

The risk/reward for collecting the flowers is clever. The higher your score, the harder the escape.

Further on that, you weren't punished for not collecting flowers: if you hit the red shadows without one, you're booted outside, not killed.

The upgrades were all useful, providing the player with a number of very helpful tools for escape.

I liked the deadliness of the spirits, and how the player would quickly learn to detect and escape them. The ability to hide in caves and shrines (and later displace yourself) gave a proper feeling of fear and respect for the monsters.

The negatives:

The randomly generated world hurts more than it helps. The random locations of useful items, caves, shrines, and dead-ends means that game difficulty varies wildly between play-throughs. Sometimes you get get a useful treasure moments after starting. Other times you'll wander for nearly a minute without finding anything, only to perish when cornered by a spirit. I feel like the game would be improved if there was more reliability on finding upgrades and shelters. A more detailed map to start, ensuring there is a cave right by the start, or giving the player better clues to avoid the wind spirits (blustering leaves to indicate both direction and proximity so you can flee) would reduce the randomness and eliminate cheap deaths.

The caves that only contain notes (they seem to appear more often on normal difficulty) are only useful the first time you encounter them. After the initial clues, they are just a disappointment to find when you were hoping for a map or compass. If these notes served some function (revealing one cave or shrine on the map) they would be less upsetting.

Getting killed by the spirits seems to be a harsh contrast to just losing some flowers when you touch a red shadow. I'm not sure how you'd resolve this, though, without removing the fear of the spirits. I feel like there are two competing concepts here, where one is a randomly generated exploration game in which the player collects flowers for a high score, and the other is a sort of survival horror game where the player flees from vengeful, deadly spirits. I feel like Twofold secret would do very well if they took these two concepts, and chose one of them to expand upon for a future title, because both concepts are great and well implemented in this game... they just don't feel totally compatible to me.

All in all, this is an excellent game. I encourage players to try playing this a few times, and to at least check the hints before you give up, as they reveal some clever tactics for survival.

-SirNiko

Wow. This really, truly, made me feel scared. For now, I'll let that pass as a good thing.

For keith:

To user the displacement power, hold down the left and right arrows at the same time. Keep holding and you'll either:

a) Leave the cave you're in
or
b) Jump to a random spot on the map.

A useful tip on using this (that worked for me at least:)

If you wait until things get dark and then use it, its good to escape the overland spirits. But if you wait too long (for the red screen flash) you'll never disappear in time. The risk is of course that you land right in the middle of another one, so be prepared.

Hope that helps.

I like this game; the comparison to Shadow of the Colossus is apt. It's not a remake of SotC, nor does it try to be. However, both share the same feel of desolation, the intentionally limited music, and an emphasis on setting.

Some points about it I like:
- "The world becomes uncomfortably sharp." (If you haven't gotten this yet, and you want to know how, see spoiler 1.) Uncomfortably sharp, indeed.
- The story. As the reviewer wrote, Where We Remain doesn't hit you over the head with the story. If you want to play it like Zelda - "Find and rescue the girl!" - you can, though you miss out on the real reason to play the game. The story is good enough that I cared about reading the tablets and the letters.
- The method you learn the story - it is revealed in disordered drips and drabs. It took me a bit before I read enough tablets to recognize that they weren't just providing setting, but also story.
- The caves. The flower mechanism is good - it allows you some leniency for when you mess up, or while you're learning how the caves function.
- The spirits and shrines. Hearing the storm and thunder, seeing the screen darken and shake, running from the spirits add tension and challenge to the game. By my second failure, I recognized what the spirits actually were - the fact this wasn't spoonfed to me added to the story. (See spoiler 2 for their identities)
- The hidden ending available through expert mode. Definitely worth the effort. (See spoiler 3 for what I thought was an especially nice touch)

Three comments, neither good nor bad:
- I understand that there needs to be some consequences to failure. The existence of only one second chance strikes a good balance between one 'life' and infinite 'lives', but feels rather harsh on the easiest setting.
- As a programmer, I thought it was interesting to see the console output, but I don't think this was intentionally left in the final result.
- It may just be pareidolia, but I thought I saw a cluster of trees in the shape of a heart.

Some things that I think can be improved on. These are moderately spoilerish, so be forewarned:

- I would have liked to be able to review the whole story at once - even if it were only the parts I had found. Perhaps after all three endings are found, you could review the texts you had found through all your successful playthroughs.
- If I have already started reading a tablet or letter (before getting chased off by a spirit), I would have liked to go faster through what I had already seen when I return.
- The boots. They'll let you outrun the spirits - but only if you don't hit anything. I'm glad I got them in Beginner difficulty, not expert.
- The ankh. Yes, it's generally seen as a symbol for life, but it's Egyptian. Considering that the tablets describe the island as being under Apollo's protection, I would think that a lyre would better fit the motif.
- When the spirits are stunned, I didn't feel they scattered very far. At one point, I had a spirit between a temple and the cave I was trying to reach. I would stun the spirit, and it would wander off - but always along the single, same path I was trying to take. I eventually went into a different cave to randomly relocate the spirits.
- The borders between the spirit's areas are necessary, but caused them to act funny when they reached the edge. I had a spirit bouncing against its boundry, and it felt odd to stand two rows away from a raging spirit without it able to reach me.

All in all, I think it's a great game. Good work!

Spoiler 1)

Play on expert mode, until you get the glasses.

Spoiler 2)

I was caught by Notus and Boreas. If you aren't up on your Greek mythology, see this article on Wikipedia.

Spoiler 3)

In the expert difficulty, you are guaranteed to get the girl in the first dark-doored cave you enter - the console indicates that it selects the 'contents' of the caves so that this is the case.

Oh my Gosh.

Agreement with the fear- wow! This game is effectively creating much more apprehension and fear in me than some recent horror-themed point-and-clicks (which I love, please keep uploading them). These monsters are TERRIFYING- the rush of wind, the darkening of the sky, the fact that you don't know for certain which direction they're coming from and then the roar of sound as they enter your field of view (and take up a lot of it). I've gotten away from them a couple times, but (unless you got lucky with cave placement) they're kinda like that abhominable snowman in SkiFree- once they start chasing you, you know you're probably dead. And it's not even a peaceful death- it's a panicked, running, cornered, roaring death.

I've finished the easy ending twice; now I'm on expert mode and I've spent the last few minutes hiding in a cave, afraid to come out, because this cave (right next to my spawn point) seems to be smack dab in the middle of this monster's territory. And all I got from it was the glasses which I'm too scared to try to use to read that note out in the open. What I wouldn't give to start the game next to a cave with the sinister orb in it.

I think I'm going to make a random run for it, hope to run into a cave and not a dead end, and then (when that doesn't work) restart the game as many times as I need to until it gives me an auspicious beginning.

I didn't see any mention of what happens if...

you don't pick-up any flower before finding the girl.

If you have zero flowers when you find her...

she gives a long story about your past together and then...

offers you a choice...

You can choose her or a new item...

the raft. With it you can leave the island, but...

you will be leaving her behind.

"they're kinda like that abhominable snowman in SkiFree- once they start chasing you, you know you're probably dead"

Actually... ;)

I'm glad to know I wasn't the only one that found that enemy terrifying. I thought it was just me! I tried it twice and that was enough, that monster is too much for me.

I really dont like games that put you into impossible situations. restarting the game infinite times because the game random generated a bunch of dungeons with useless notes instead of items isn't fun. teleporting away from one moster on top of another isnt fun. trying to run away from something faster than you while desperately trying to find some form of safety isnt fun.

concept is interesting, but in terms of playability I just cant stand this game.

I just discover something...

The White Tiles...

will protect you from Notus and Boreas...

if you are standing on the white tiles, when they touch you, they get stunned for 5 seconds and/or get banished to another area of the map.

Loved it. The first time I encountered Notus (not knowing ANYTHING about the game) I nearly wet 'em :D

Yes, random generation of maps can be a rhymes-with-witch, but that's life in quick little browser games. A couple more caves/items would make it feel a little less like a deathtrap...but it also might make it too much of a cake walk most of the time.

I think it's best the way it is, with the caveat that no matter how advanced your skills, you may still die.

Hmmm... is every game beatable? Because I've been wandering around on the same map for what feels like hours, and I can't find any unexplored caves except ones with purple doors. I've been through 8 caves, six gave me items and two gave me notes, but I seem to be stuck. ... I must be missing a cave somewhere, but I feel like I've been everywhere on the map at least three times.

Okay, I loved this game, but this must be a bug, right?

On expert mode, I found the other person in the cave. She told me that once I touched her, the next spirit I touched would be destroyed. So I touched her, turned strangely blue, then went up to a spirit... and was promptly killed. Was she lying? Lame.

Really enjoying this, but thought I would mention (in case the creator reads this, which I hope they do, because lots of good insight here) my #1 suggestion for improvement: pause the game while the player reads the tablets. This would allow them to get the story without adding any extra escapes or anything - as soon as they wander away the spirits come after them again.

But not having to run to a tablet, read a bit, run away, come back (wait for text to load) read a bit, run away, et cetera... would *greatly* improve things, in my opinion, encouraging rather than discouraging the exploration and story. (Especially after you've died lots of times and start to lose track of which tablets you've already read).

I'm having problems attempting to get more endings than the generic "I kiss you" ending.

However for those of you who have busy lives or want to know more about the story I've collected the parts of the story you can read with the glasses.

1.


1. I am sorry, Key. If I could make amends by filling every page I write
with that sentence I would. But you deserve an explanation. I hope one day
you will be ready to read it.
And I pray you will forgive me once you do.

I'm not sure anyone can understand what I had cone. No one has suffered
under the god's hands as we did. My brothers at least, were allowed to
live in the sun. The gods distrusted my sister and me because we had
intelligence above our bothers, and bound us to the underground.
By the time I met you, I had forgotten even the sound of waves, even
the smeet smell of saltwater

-- Freya.

2.

2. We were helpless without mortal help. My sister thought we would
never escape; she fled deeper into the caves. I haven't seen her in
many yars. I held to the hope that someone would be brave enough to
venture into the caves.

You and I were the hapiest of accidents, Key. People will write that I
ensorcellled you with my charms. But I never possessed that magic. I can
change the story your eyes tell you, but I cannot alter your heart.

Please remember: everything i've done is out of love for you. Every wrong
I've worked was formed from affection.

-- Freya.

3.

3. You led me out of the caves into the light but I didn't know what price
that would hold. I didn't know that what bound me to the caves also kept
my dull brothers in check. The balance managed on tiptoes was destroyed
forever.

It was terrible. I cast what charms I could to turn your eyes from
the slaughter around us, but I could not keep it up forever. I could not
bear for you to know what you had caused. You are innocent, Key. Where
there is blame, place it on me.

Come Home.

--Freya

4.

4. The Island was in ruins. Everyone you'd known had died. My brothers
were uncontrollable. Like Babies with butterflied trapped in their hands.
I couldn't cloud your eyes to what had happened forever. Instead I invented
a fantasy for us to play, a game of hide-and-seek.

You were meant to be a hero. And in this story we make together, you are
one. You are the one that finds me in darkness; you are the one that carries
me out of it.
It doesn't matter whether your deeds are real or not.
What you believe matters more than the world.

-- Freya.

5.

5. Everything has meaning. Flowers denote love. The island is the earth.
Games are Life. The only thing here without antecedent is death. When my
brothers find you, I keep them from harming you. You will always succeed
here. It's only a matter of time before you find me when we play.
I've lost count of how many times now. Years it must be now.

I wish we could have been ordinary. But wishes are only a way to name what
will always be beyond our grasp.
A game is enough.

-- Freya


Hey everyone! I worked on this game with Joel. It's great to hear your thoughts, and there are some really good critiques in the comments. Some quick specific things:

@hikari: We wanted to cast you as a specific character, and hopefully the naming screens cued that a little bit.

@Parse: Thanks to you, I have learned a new word today :) The console is intentional; I like the idea of letting people peek behind the scenes.

@Buttons: that definitely is a bug. I tried to get it to happen myself but it worked as it should, so I don't know what went wrong. Hopefully it was just a one-time thing...

I had to finally give up. I spent a few hours on this, and got the first two endings no problem, but the third ending....

I tried it several different times on expert level, spending tons of time going over the entire screen. I never found the sister- at one point, I thought I noticed that sometimes the end girl had googly pink eyes and sometimes had nothing, so I wondered if maybe one of them was the sister, but I tried going up to both of them (across different attempts) and got the same boring first ending.

I don't know if it's a glitch, or if I just repeatedly managed to miss the one tiny corner of the screen that could've helped me, but I'm too frustrated to look at this game again.

I wanted to like it. And part of me does (I really like retro exploration games). But I don't get a sense of quiet, just mostly blind running panic.

Following on ITA84, on anything after beginner level:

It is like playing Pac-Man, with:

- Randomized Walls
- Ginormous ghosts you can't see (but who see you very well indeed)
- ...who don't have to follow the walls
- In a maze you can't see (with plenty of dead-ends)
- With powerups you can't see

I dunno...maybe it's me, but the difficulty is at least punishing, and ramps up to excruciating really quickly. After the tenth try, I just had to give up without knowing the other endings...too much luck involved.

I played this quickly last night and ended up finding the easy ending in a minute and forty seconds. I thought that was a bit of a let-down, and what I saw before I dove into the cave told me I was too scared to try another run through.

@Chris: I figured as much after I found out there is a plot to this.

Thanks for the spoiler notes! I only managed to find 2 total (un-glassed) on my many fails on Easy, it's great to know more about the story.

Unfortunately, the difficulty of this game is really a turnoff. Is there some 'cheat code' that we can get after dying a certain number of times to go through the game unbothered by spirits? Just for the sake of the story.

This game has extremely random difficulty. I don't mind it being hard, but the one time I did manage to beat it, I felt as if I'd only won because I was lucky. Not because I was any good at the game. I had two white-paved areas situated like this:
XXXXX
XXXXX
XOXOX
XXXXX
XXXXX
And 5~ caves within easy-dash distance. It was a cake-walk, even though I was playing on normal difficulty(a difficulty that led to severe fail during my first attempt...beginner? I don't need no stinkin' beginner's level! Oh, how I learned.). Because of this, beating the game doesn't feel like a real accomplishment.

I was turned off of this game at first, but after learning how to survive, I was absorbed into the plot. It would have been nice if the game paused while reading the tablets though.

verikandle:

The second sister looks quite distinct from the first, though the cave is similar. The sound is also slightly different, if I remember correctly. I think it's scripted for her to appear second, no matter what order you enter the caves.

Some general tips:

Boreas can't enter the bottom half of the map and Notus can't enter the top. If you're trying to get away from one, it might be easiest to hightail it north/south.

If you use a statuary to banish Boreas, he has to go all the way to the top-middle of the map; similarly, Notus has to go to the bottom-middle. This means if you banish one of them near the middle of the map, you have a while before he comes back, but if you do it near the top or bottom, it's not that useful.

A little caution goes a long way. The second you hear the wind, you might want to turn around and head toward the nearest cave or statuary.

Harder difficulty levels can actually be easier, since they have more caves. Of course, that doesn't help you if you don't have the keys or don't know where the caves are.

Wow. If you want to understand the story, find the

glasses, I think only found in expert mode. Going around reading the girl's notes with the glasses on tells you 10 times as much as the alternate endings do.

I like how to really get the full experince you have to essentially disobey the in-game instructions. You break away from the game itself to find the things underneath.

This game is definitely more than just randomly generated. If you play long enough, you see that it really is the same island, just rearranged, every time. For instance,

The cave closest to the starting point almost always contains a crystal ball or a map (I don't think it's possible to get both).

On each version of the island, there's an area where the stone tablets are really dense. There's always a shrine near them, presumably for running to safety while trying to spend all that time reading.

The girl's cave (and the other one) is always fairly close to the shore.

There are plenty of other subtle rules, and after playing through enough, you begin to feel like you "know" the island. Even though it's a new map every time, it still feels like I know my way around, picking up on the patterns of the landscape to find my way.

I really, REALLY hope that a bunch of indie games take inspiration from this.

Also, in the harder levels you're much less likely to luck out.

Since you need to find two keys before winning, you'll never accidentally stumble into the right cave early on.

I wasn't crazy about this game at first, but I found myself coming back to it repeatedly -- it's haunting at a deep level, and even when I'd seen all the tablets and notes a dozen times, it felt like there was always one more fragment of the story to unearth, one more combination of things to try.

I actually found it harder to uncover the story than to win it on the expert level or even to find all the endings --

the girl and her sister always appear and are only two things to find, while the glasses and some of the notes may not always be present, and if you happen to find any notes before the glasses then you also have to manage to make your way back to them

-- which I found frustrating from a storytelling standpoint. That also meant I wound up

making the choice to kill the girl before I had any clear idea what I was doing (I hadn't even ever seen the glasses in any game up to that point); and when I finally knew enough, after several more playthroughs, to understand the meaning of that choice, the lack of another possible course of action and corresponding fourth ending made the game lack real closure for me:

it's easy enough to kill the girl for revenge, or a sense of duty, or as the unwitting tool of her jealous sister; but when you've finally collected enough information to understand what happened, to read the girl's notes and learn the story she's been terrified but desperate to tell you all these years, it feels like there should be a way to tell her you understand, you forgive and accept her -- not just kill her, leave the island without her, or re-enter the dream, but to accept reality and move forward, to have whatever life you can together.

I agree that the difficulty level is too high. And Chris, I encountered the same bug that Buttons did:

when I tried to kill an "overworld" spirit with the sister's power, I got killed instead, or in addition. I had the impression that both outcomes (spirit dies and I die) were triggered, if that helps track down the bug.

Anyway, terrific game. I wouldn't complain this much about a mediocre one.

Once you understand the game it's quite easy to outwit the sinisters. Here are some tips

1) check the light, if it gets darker as you go one way then you're heading towards a sinister. Make sure that you are always in the brightest light possible

2) Use the displace power to your advantage. I found it very easy to dodge the sinisters with this power as soon as the 'red flash' happens press the two keys and dissapear!

3) Use the shrines to your advantage, either banish the sinisters by waiting for them to try to attack you or wait until you get the 'green flash' meaning all clear.

I enjoyed a lot this game. The point of it for me is not beating the spirits or finding the different endings, but to put together piece by piece the poignant background story of doomed love and its unpredictable consequences.

I loved how this is not just handed to me, I have to earn it, playing the game several times (the random map helps to make this more challenging), how I have to slowly read the notes under the threat of being captured by a spirit, how:

the world looks uncomfortably, even painfully sharp when I read the real story with the glasses. Look again at the notes hidden in caves when you have the glasses, most of the 5 parts of the story end up there.

The end result is that you can identify with the main character at a very deep emotional level (for a casual flash game), you start as a blank slate, not knowing what is going on...

as if someone had erased your memories of that world.

Beautiful, original way of retelling that good, old story, guys. Epic win.

Re the sister bug:

I couldn't trigger it. I wonder if you are perhaps thinking that you can kill _both_ spirits this way in the same game. That's not the case, you can only kill _one_ of the brothers. After you do you lose the blue zombie mojo and you are again vulnerable to the remaining one.

Re the sister's cave, I didn't like that:

if you enter her cave, leave it without speaking to her and come back afterwards she is gone.

About the no-flower ending:

I gave her no flowers, and I just got a speech about how she knew I wanted to give her a gift and try harder next time. Does it matter that I picked some flowers up and then had them taken away by the red spirits?

I play on Easy Mode because I'm a big scaredy cat, so that might make a difference.

Also, the red spirits' movement reminded me a lot of increpare's mirror stage

matt w,

Yes! If you pick-up even a single flower, regardless of whether it is taken away or not, you get the flower ending. You have to avoid all flowers before finding the girl in order to get the raft.

To matt w:

Yes, it matters that you picked up and then lost the flowers. You need to successfully avoid all flowers the whole game. It is easier to get this ending on Beginner,

since you don't need any keys to find the girl.

I agree 100% with Jusin.

I too found the second sister before I had used the glasses to re-read any of the notes. I wish after having read all 5 special notes, there would be a 4th ending allowed that didn't involve killing the girl or erasing your memory.

All in all, a great game with a powerful story. I'm impressed with the poignancy.

For those having trouble reading the stone tables scattered around:

I believe the monsters won't see you (if they haven't already set a bee-line for you). That, or they seem to wait, as I've had the monsters pace back and forth nearby while I was on a stone tablet several times.

Lastly, cu is definitely right about the sister bug.

The monsters have a tendency to double up. See if you can separately identify the white eyes monster and the red eyes monster.

I really loved this game. Quite addicting. After a while I got all endings and got a pretty thorough understanding of the story, I found it fun just running around the island avoiding the monsters. The thing I didn't like about it was a couple of times, I was standing on the shrine and the monster would just pace back and forth in front of it so I couldn't touch. Other than that, great game.

I'm amazed at how terrifying this chunky-pixelled game is!

I thought this was a FANTASTIC game. My only critism would be the 'luck factor' involved especially at the harder difficulties. I feel like the way that I was able to get the third ending was because I found the compass and the crystal ball right away and that the final two caves I needed were close together.

OK, with some regret, I'm going to say that this game is too chunky-pixelled. By which I mean, the controls feel very intolerant; if you aren't lined up on exactly the right pixel, you won't be able to go around the tree/get into the cave. I know the monsters are supposed to be threatening, but I feel like the game should cut me a little more slack when I'm playing on beginner mode -- if you're only off the path by a little bit, it could autocorrect you onto the path. After about three straight deaths at the cavemouth I lose my will to try for a new ending.

Re the "sister bug": cu, nope, it was definitely the first spirit I encountered. And Sethum, I guess it's possible that doubling up was the issue, but it doesn't seem very likely:

with the crystal ball to show their locations, I rarely see the two spirits close to each other; in particular, because they're confined to opposite sides of the island, they should almost never be together.

Also, both spirits have both white and red eyes.

My guess about when people report seeing a spirit pace back and forth is

they're standing just past the edge of its territory, and it's trying to reach them but can't cross that invisible line. Alternatively, in the case where Triscuit was standing on a shrine, it may just have been that the spirit went back to its regular random wandering since it couldn't see the player.

verikandle,

I think the girl normally is drawn without a face like your character, but if you have the glasses, she has glowing purple eyes -- the color of magic, the color of the notes once you can see what's really written there. (Nice work with that color motif, by the way, Chris and Joel.)

I found another bug, though I have no idea how to trigger it: the last time I won the game with the regular ending, the "Congratulations!" message was garbled as though multiple lines of text were printed on top of each other; and then when I went to the Records screen, my past playthroughs had been erased and I was told "You have not completed this game yet." It does still say "You have won 25% of the time, and seen 3 of 3 endings", so only some of the history was affected.

Incidentally, where's this console I haven't found yet?

Did someone tried to bring 100 flowers to the girl ? (I wonder if that is even possible...)

sphax, I got 100 flowers on Beginner.

You get a different message for the "kiss" ending

...and she asks you to bring her 200 flowers.

I believe there are exactly 100 flowers in the game.

I don't know if you get a different result in Normal or Expert modes, but I don't think so.

I'm with tenkuchima. Requiring multiple plays until you randomly get something that's winnable is just too annoying. Even worse is that there's no easy way to even tell if the map is nigh-impossible at the start. (No way to restart if you accidentally touch a flower, too).

The game would be much improved if the mini-map showed at least caves you've seen but can't open. Or a general outline of terrain, or at least what parts of the island you've seen before. Or maybe where the shrines are. With the random setup, it's not worth it to invest the time to learn all but a small part of the map, only to wander into a blind alley and maybe get killed for it.

Also, if you never pick any flowers to start with, (and why should you - I didn't) you end up with the raft ending with her asking if you're 'tired of this'? If you go to talk to her after taking the raft, you bizarrely get the flower ending, with her asking for more flowers next time.

I didn't read every comment here, but I did see all three endings.

I think it would be nice if the game mapped the terrain features and the flowers, in addition to just mapping the locations of caves, and showed it all on a color map. A larger game screen would let you make some changes to a few different things so that the game could draw you in a little better. Having larger maps with more caves, flowers, and everything else on higher difficulties could also make it more interesting (assuming that the map was more detailed).

The most disappointing thing to me though was the first ending.

My understanding was that you just remained on the island and repeated the whole thing over again. Why not leave the island with the girl? And if you did leave then it wasn't too clear: why wasn't there a little ending scene showing your departure like in the other two endings? I

As such, none of the endings seemed very happy. 4/5
Iconian

I had the same bug as Justin a couple posts above. (After completing it returns to the records page, but text is garbled with multiple lines overlayed onto each other. Following, all past records are erased. The Win-Lose% and # of endings aren't overwritten, but the rankings of best times/flowers disappear and it says "You have not completed this game yet.")

If it helps, the time I got that, I'd reached the raft ending and picked up the raft, but then immediately talked to the girl, getting the standard kiss ending.

Sounds like Kangra did the same thing, but isn't complaining about a records wipe, so this may not be the key problem.

Loved the game and the complete fear for my precious little life, as well as the entrancing backstory hidden behind the apparent "game."

Definitely would like to be able to go back and read the story-pieces I've found without the pressure of WHIRLING DOOM IS COMING FOR YOU.

@Iconian
About the first ending,

You're not missing any scenes.

You do NOT leave the island. There's a reason that may become apparent after reading enough of the tablets and the girl's notes (through the glasses).

KingfisherEyes transcribed all 5 of her notes above, so you can read them above if you don't want to go back to find them.

It is impossible for her to leave the island.

She and her siblings are trapped here. You're not actually freeing her, you're

playing the game she has created to protect you from what's happened. Even if she could leave the island, it might break the seal that binds her brothers, setting them free as well. Her brothers are

Notus and Boreas. Bringing her out of the cave already broke some seals and released them upon the poor civilization on the island.

Yes, it is all kind of tragic. The story fits right in with the patterns of Greek mythology.

I'd love to see all three endings but the difficulty of "expert" is just too much for me--too many dead ends, too many long long detours, too few caves. Spending more than fifteen minutes without even finding one necessary item is just not my idea of fun.

I've played through this game several times on all the difficulty levels. Because of how frustrating it can be to find some of the tablets, I've decided to write out a summary of the events in the story based on what I found in the tablets in the game. All of the following is the story I gleamed, along with theory to fill in the holes I found.

I can't make a promise that is the game creators intention, only what I figured out from the game.

Big time spoilers

The Island and it's history.

For over a century, the island has been relatively peaceful, worshiping Apollo and living their lives full of offerings, dedications, hard work, and trying to enjoy life all the while doing the best they can to never offend Apollo and summon forth the wrath of the Optasia.

The Optasia kept to themselves outside the island in the ocean, riding the winds of the storms and only occasionally coming ashore with the storms to attack fisherman or those who dared to live too close to the shoreline.

The Man

One day, a man working his fathers fields heard the sound of singing. Following it, he finds a woman inside a cave singing. He is awestruck by her beauty, and refuses to leave her side at first. They begin a secret romance, and he finds every chance he can to be with her. However, he notices that she never leaves the cave, no matter the promises he makes her, but she never turns him away and always invites him to come back to her in the cave.

The priests of the temples become concerned over how he spends so much time in the caves, and question him. He creates a story of charting the caves, but when unable to provide the proof, they realize he is lying. They even suspect that he may be going into the caves to be with the one of them. Realizing the potential of his crime, they drag him away to the temples to work for five years as penance for the potential catastrophe he could have brought down upon them.

The man refuses to live without his love in the cave, and he fights his way out of the temple, even killing several temple guards in order to get back to the caves. Desperate, he searches the caves, and at last finds his love again.

The Woman

In the caves, the young man tells her of his crimes, begging her to forgive him, for he had to do it or else he would never see her again. He begs her to leave the cave, to go with him to the surface and escape the island so that they could be together again.

The Woman is initially wary to come out, knowing full well that she is never allowed to leave the cave. With the man's cajoling, his descriptions of all the things they could see and do once they escape the island, she is overwhelmed with the mental imagery of what could be. It had been so long since she had seen anything but darkness, gloom and rock, she agrees to go to the surface with him.

When she steps outside of her cave, the barrier on her is broken. It would appear that she could never leave the cave without someone to guide her out.

The Fiends

With the barrier broken, the law that forced the woman to live in the cave was broken. This unfortunately also caused the law that kept the Optasia out in the sea to be broken as well. The fragile pact with Apollo was broken, and no longer were the Optasia required to obey the old boundaries.

Boreas and Nortus began to invade the island. They appeared to the islanders not as gods, but as massive cyclones of storm clouds with eyes of fires and calamities that sought out to drag in anything living that got in their way.

The two brothers, though they were gods, were also simple minded, only caring for the destruction and consumption of the islanders. As they rained terror on the island, the woman realized what had happened, and was saddened. The island was being destroyed by the Optasia, and she couldn't stop the guilt of realization that it was all her fault. The fiends were in fact her brothers, she was just as much an Optasia as they were, and her imprisonment was the tool that kept them from having the freedom to reign over the island as they desired.

As the man's friends and family were consumed and destroyed by the Optasia, the woman did the only thing she knew. She covered his eyes, and made him see the island as something entirely different. He saw the falling temples and ruined homes as ancient ruins and overgrown shrubbery, the cries of terror and fear were replaced with silence, only the sounds of the raging Optasia could be heard.

As the survivors watched her and the man walk away into the wilderness, they were filled with rage. They huddled in the caves they could enter, starving and dying of thirst, only daring to sneak out when possible for any kind of sustenance. There were objects that could help them to evade the fiends, but they were few and only those who dared to go out and bring food were allowed to use them. Some of them wrote on tablets to explain what had happened around them.

One even told the story of watching the man and the woman walk together, and at how horrified he was to hear her true voice. The woman had bewitched him so that her voice was of softness and silver, not shattered glass and shrieks as the others had heard.

The Other

The Other never dared to break the rules given to her and the Woman. They were the Optasia, Boreas and Nortus had the sea and could never come onto land, while herself and her sister were to live in the caves forever, never daring to enter the surface world. If this rule was broken, their brothers would no longer have to obey the pact they were given and could destroy this beautiful island as they saw fit.

Unlike her sister, she went deeper into the caves, forsaking all contact with the outside world, even locking herself in with a key so that she could never be reached and risk freeing her brothers. Unlike her sister, her body was hideous, her eyes suited to the darkness and frightening to any who dared look her in the eye. None of this she could help, for her nature was not to be beautiful, her nature was to act as a vehicle of revenge. Those who sought her out and knew the truth, or at least suspected the truth, could touch her hands and gain the power to destroy the one they wanted revenge on.

Now

You have spent time after time playing the game with the woman. You never remember what happened before, only that you have to save her. You flee from the brothers, and hunt the caves in search of your love, to be her hero. One day, you find a pair of glasses, and read the letters she left for you, only to be horrified by what they now say. Of the truth of what happened so long ago.

You now have a few simple choices.

Do you stop playing the game, and go to her, making her find a way to let you leave the island.

Do you pretend to play the game, and keep searching for tablets and letters, learning the full story of what happened so long ago. As you learn more and more, do you grow angry with her? Do you begin to hate her for the fact that even though she blames herself for what happened, if she had obeyed the rules, this horror wouldn't be happening.

Do you desire revenge against her, and are you willing to go to the ends of the island to find the one who can grant you that power?

Or do you forgive her, understanding that it was also your fault for constantly trying to make her leave the cave, and continue to play the game with her, because you love her that much and all that you could ever want is for her to happy, even if it is playing a game?

As I wrote earlier, this is mostly interpretation and theory based on the tablets I could find in the game. Everybody could read the same info differently, so please don't take this as the definite story of the game.

One of the times I was playing, The Woman had glowing eyes. Was this the result of seeing her with the glasses? It was very early in my game and I can't remember if I had the glasses or not. I guessed that she was The Other, but I've seen The Other since then, and it was definitely the blonde.

Menschenjaeger:

I'm not sure to tell you the truth.

What you described sure doesn't sound like the other woman. The Other woman is pretty distinct when you find her. The two times I found her, she was always a purple blue shade with darker eyes. She kind of looked like a corpse.

I've yet to see the blonde woman with oogy boogy eyes that others have seen. The couple of times I've played expert and found the glasses, she always seemed normal. Of course this could be one of those things that randomly change in the game. Sort of like some of the tablets that talk about how the man see's the woman as beautiful with an amazing voice, but others describe her voice as horrific. Maybe you'll find it in one play through, maybe ten games later you'll find it.

For those of you who don't feel like losing a dozen or so times to hear the story I figure I'll transcribe all the tablets/notes. Not sure they're in the right order, but you can figure 'em out yourself, right?

Records of the Island

...These are the records of the island we name Polykotes, in our hundred-and-thirteenth year. We have no archon to reckon our year by. Instead we remember the first year we landed on this shore, and count the hard deeds that keep us alive and our settlements thriving...

...On the fifth day of Skirophiron each year, we gather in the largest of the halls we have constructed to celebrate the year's gifts, the plentiful harvest, the newborn children, the sunrise. We are a solemn people but even the thickest curtains must admit a little light. We drink and dance; all rules save one are suspended for the evening...

...We hear of wars taking place on the continent, but we do not trouble ourselves with them. We are forgotten by the world, and in turn we are allowed to forget it. Those who wish for a larger life may seek it for themselves. Nothing will stand between them and the sea. We have problems enough. We keep our children's eyes turned from the spirits so that they understand our mortal peril only when they are ready to. Living on the edge of oblivion is a heavy burden, but we share it evenly...

...We named the opastia that haunt our home island after the winds that bind them to each part of the island. They would devour us all if they could. We do not know why they hunger. There are some of us who have seen one eat a man, but none that would give voice to what they saw. Better for it to remain memory alone and not story. Our imaginations can satisfy us more than enough...

...Someone new to our land might ask why we have not slain the opastia that curse this island. They are impervious to any weapon fashioned by mortals, and pass as easily through our fortifications as a fish through the ocean. We have tried to reason with the opastia, or at least engage them in dialogue. But they do not respond to words at all. We do not think they understand language in even its most rudimentary form. We have never seen the spirits converse among themselves. They are, as far as we can understand, entirely unthinking beasts, driven by instinct and hunger...

...The opastia have existed on this island for as long as our memory extends, and many of us believe that they have existed long before mortal man. We speculate that this place was formed as a prison for them, a way to contain what could not be destroyed, even by the gods. But we should not venture to guess at what gods wrought, and why. We have life; we have breath; all else is a gift...

...Apollo watches over our herd. No opastia may tread in his house, and we have constructed many homes for him, so that our population covers nearly the entirety of our small island. We can sit at the edge of the Mediterranean and fish if we are mindful. We can grow wheat in the fields so long as watch is kept at each horizon. Our lives are simple ones, they are by necessity, but is there no better life than the one lived in devotion to the gods? Let the statues of Apollo that dot this island stand as testament to our constant virtue...

...Let it be remembered that on the seventeenth day of Boedromion, we laid an injunction on one of us, who in defiance of all convention, calls himself Xdrngy. We discovered he had been sneaking out of the settlements for several nights. He claims that he was only satisfying curiosity, that he wished to map the caves of our island in order to further our collected knowledge. But when asked to produce any such maps, he could not. Thus, he shall serve as an altar-servant until five winters have passed. He will eat nothing during time but what Apollo will grant him, drink nothing but what Apollo delivers to him, be nothing but dust until he learns to obey...

...The boy has destroyed us. He has broken the covenant we have held with Apollo as long as we have lived on this island. He has brought one of the opastia into our homestead and disjuncted our protection. Nowhere is safe for us. They are coming for us and there are few places for us to hide. We know what waits for us in the caves...

...Our settlements have been afire three days now. And yet we count this as a blessing, for the smoke, of all things, seems to keep the opastia from noticing our presence. Hunger has started to affect our minds. But there are much more worse things at hand...

...Those who are able-bodied should attempt to fashion rafts and set sail for Knossos. Those that cannot should take shelter where possible, to hide themselves from the opastia by whatever means present themselves. This is our final edict.

...We few who have remained behind struggle to record what we can in the time left to us. We number less than fifty. Most of us have fled to the coastline, to make passage to Knossos. We have no way of knowing how many of those have survived but we think the number low. The opastia move with terrifying alacrity now. They have been waiting decades to sate their hunger...

...We only number five now. We are likely the only living beings left on this island -- save for that cursed boy, that traitor, whose name we will not enscribe here. Let his name be forgotten. Let his deeds stand forever. We glimpse him walking with one of the infernal opastia. He seems utterly unaware of the destruction he has delivered unto us. He walks as if dreaming, as if he heard none of the screams, saw none of the fires. It is as if he only hears the screeches of his opastia companion, as if they are honeyed songs in his ears...

...Time is short. Remember us. There is darkness. Here it comes.

The Boy's records

...I engrave my story into this stone so that it might outlast my body. I write so we can be remembered once we are nothing but shades. I write so that my love for you may remain as the tides change, the moon wax and wane. As the stars follow their course. Let this story be constant; let everything else alter.

...I hope my testaments will become mixed with the official records of this island. I want our story to replace the tallies of grain, the endless births and deaths described only by names, useless names -- I want all prose to be replaced by our song...

...It was you who first called to me. I heard your song while working in my father's fields, on the hottest day of the year. There is no colder water than your voice. I walked the forbidden caves, I eluded the shades the gods placed there to keep mortal men from finding you. I succeeded where no others did before because I loved you, I loved you even before I knew you...

...I have had no women before you, and none shall come after you. You are my only, my song without end. I dream of your golden hair and wake with a smile that cannot be broken. The world is a shadow. I am a dreamer. In the contours of your face I glimpse what is real...

...We were lying together, not speaking. I could see a trickle of moonlight in the cave ahead of us. You were sleeping, but only fitfully. Dreams never clung to you the way they do to me. When you woke, I asked about your family. It was the one thing we never discussed. Finally you said: I have two brothers and one sister, and I hope I never see any of them ever again. I kissed you because I was afraid you were angry at me; I never thought to ask about your parents...

...They placed their punishment on me. Five years' labor at the shrines. I could not let that happen to me. Your absence for that long would be a death sentence. I killed three men today as I escaped. Let my guilt be repeated into eternity, let my shame carry across the earth. But please -- please fill my ears, my heart, my soul with your song. Make me forget the thing I have done today...

...I will wait until dawn before committing myself to this decision. I will not sleep. I will think deeply on it. I was raised, like everyone else, to believe the elders' word is supreme. It is one thing to hide from it. It is another to defy it. But I must. I will not stay hidden forever in these caves. I will take you by the hand and lead you into the light. We will force them to recognize our love; we will break all the prophecies; we will shatter the gods' own laws.

The Girl's notes (without glasses)

Xdrngy, I am trapped on this island just as you are. Even worse. I'm being kept in a cave, but I don't know where exactly. I know you'll be able to find me. But beware. No one on this island is your friend. Already they are looking for you. Run. Caves mean safety.

I love you.

--Freya

Xdrngy, I miss you terribly. I wish I could say it in grander words than that, but I don't have your gift with language. You wrote me such poetry-- I know you don't remember it anymore.

The flowers you bring me are beautiful, but they carry a strong scent. The more you have, the easier the spirits can find you.

--Freya

Xdrngy, don't give up. Please, never give up. It was never your fate to become a warrior. It was never your way to kill.

There are several signs that a spirit is near; the wind grows stronger, the skies turn dark, and when it has nearly found you, the earth will begin to shake. It wants nothing but to kill you. You must find shelter as soon as you can. You cannot outrun the spirits for long.

--Freya

Xdrngy, please keep trying. You will find me sooner than you think. You are close to me even now. I can feel your presence. I always will.

There are shrines scattered across this island that can protect you from the spirits. If you are clever, you can use them to hide from the spirits; if you are more clever you can use them to banish the spirits... I know you will be able to discover how to do it.

--Freya

Just a little further, Xdrngy.

As you explore the caves of the island you'll make a map of where you've visited. There is a way to learn what caves you have yet to explore as well.

--Freya

The Girl's notes (with glasses) - thank you to KingfisherEyes

1. I am sorry, Key. If I could make amends by filling every page I write with that sentence I would. But you deserve an explanation. I hope one day you will be ready to read it. And I pray you will forgive me once you do.

I'm not sure anyone can understand what I had done. No one has suffered under the god's hands as we did. My brothers at least, were allowed to live in the sun. The gods distrusted my sister and me because we had intelligence above our bothers, and bound us to the underground. By the time I met you, I had forgotten even the sound of waves, even the sweet smell of saltwater.

-- Freya.

2. We were helpless without mortal help. My sister thought we would never escape; she fled deeper into the caves. I haven't seen her in
many years. I held to the hope that someone would be brave enough to venture into the caves.

You and I were the happiest of accidents, Key. People will write that I ensorcellled you with my charms. But I never possessed that magic. I can change the story your eyes tell you, but I cannot alter your heart.

Please remember: everything I've done is out of love for you. Every wrong I've worked was formed from affection.

-- Freya.

3. You led me out of the caves into the light but I didn't know what price that would hold. I didn't know that what bound me to the caves also kept my dull brothers in check. The balance managed on tiptoes was destroyed forever.

It was terrible. I cast what charms I could to turn your eyes from the slaughter around us, but I could not keep it up forever. I could not bear for you to know what you had caused. You are innocent, Key. Where there is blame, place it on me.

Come Home.

--Freya

4. The Island was in ruins. Everyone you'd known had died. My brothers were uncontrollable. Like Babies with butterflies trapped in their hands. I couldn't cloud your eyes to what had happened forever. Instead I invented a fantasy for us to play, a game of hide-and-seek.

You were meant to be a hero. And in this story we make together, you are one. You are the one that finds me in darkness; you are the one that carries me out of it. It doesn't matter whether your deeds are real or not. What you believe matters more than the world.

-- Freya.

5. Everything has meaning. Flowers denote love. The island is the earth. Games are Life. The only thing here without antecedent is death. When my brothers find you, I keep them from harming you. You will always succeed here. It's only a matter of time before you find me when we play. I've lost count of how many times now. Years it must be now.

I wish we could have been ordinary. But wishes are only a way to name what will always be beyond our grasp. A game is enough.

-- Freya

Definitely have all the girl's notes. Pretty sure I have the full island's history. Less sure about the boy's history. Definitely not sure if they're in the right order. Make of it what you will

XD

And I think it's a great game. There is definitely some skill involved since I started losing less once I had played through a couple (dozen) times. Also, seemed Difficult was easier than Easy, mostly because the island was bigger - easier to avoid the opastia. Even though they're bigger on difficult. Also, even though the opastia are faster than you they do a lot of swerving, so if you pull yourself out of panic mode and focus on your footwork you can survive until you reach a shrine/cave pretty easily.

Plus it's got a great story, which is rare. Overall, awesome. 5/5.

xdrngy, jigcommenter: Thanks. I wouldn't have had the patience to play for that long. (And I'd be kind of scared to try that again, anyway - and I was only on beginner!) Oh, and xdrngy, the word is "optasia", not opastia. Speaking of which, a bit of googling (http://www.searchgodsword.org/lex/grk/view.cgi?number=3701) revealed that optasia means "a vision" (or possibly "appearance") or something to that effect.

Menschenjaeger: I haven't gotten that far myself, but based on the comments I've read, that's what the Woman (not the Other) looks like with the glasses (as opposed to the usual facelessness).

I only played on Beginner (might have done Normal, but if I did, I never finished the game), and I've only beaten the game twice. The first was early on, when this review first came out - 2 items, a few flowers. The second was just now (well, about half an hour ago, actually) - all 4 items, 57 flowers or so. (I died a few times running about because I insisted on getting all the items this time.) I'd read a decent number of the tablets, but not even close to all of them. Thanks to xdrngy's transcription of the tablets, and jigcommenter's summary of his interpretation of the story, things are a bit clearer now. I just wish someone would make a video of their playthrough so I won't have to run around in terror trying to actually see the endings. :P

One more no-glasses girl note.

Venix, I know how hard this is, and I know you will be able to persevere through it. You are braver than you think.

Each spirit on the island is bound to a portion of it. If you are being pursued, you may be able to escape it by fleeing its territory.

-- Cyndi

Comments on a power up...

I have to say, the boots are about the worst power up I have ever seen. They make navigation so annoying in a game that is touchy with the pixels. Especially with all the random trees.

Kazooki - I'm in total agreement with you on that power-up.

Whenever I enter a cave and get through it to see that it's just the boots, I just walk right back out again. It's easier for me to avoid Boreas and Notus without the boots.

Oh, and for the folks wondering about the "normal" girl's

googly eyes. I just did an expert playthrough with the glasses and took a quick screengrab to show them off - they seem to flash light and dark purple. It's just a picture. :)

http://i46.tinypic.com/2qnskrs.png

Can someone make a video of the third ending?

the third ending:

First, you MUST be in expert mode. find the first girl. you can have any power-ups/items. Sometimes she is in a cave that requires a key. There is a blue key and a purple key, letting you open the corresponding color cave doors. Do NOT talk to the girl. instead, leave the cave and find another cave. in this cave, usually behind a purple door during my plays, there are no red people. it is just like the other girl's cave, only with a different inhabitant. she is the other girl, the blond's sister. this new girl is purple, sort of zombie looking. talk to her. she says she wants revenge and can give you a power to destroy a optasia, but not herself of course. touch her, then you turn blue, letting you know you have the power. now, this power can only be used once. use it by touching an optasia. you can kill one of the monsters if you want, but if you do, you can't get the third ending. travel to the cave of the original girl, the one with blond hair, and touch her while you are blue. she dies in a red flash (like if you got hit by one of the big eye monsters) leaving behind a raft. touch the raft and then walk and touch the sea surrounding the island. you get an ending similar to the second ending, (the raft, if you get no flowers and talk to her), or the opening menu,(if you don't know what the raft ending looks like) but without the blond girl standing there. you recieve text saying:

The wind dies as soon as you step from the sand onto the raft. You have done something terrible today.

(But necessary, a dark voice in your mind insists.)

You know you have done many terrible things in your life, and you do not remember any of them. You do not know how to measure the breadth or length of your guilt. It remains unknown.

There can be forgiveness in the ocean, in the rise and fall of a wave.

You sail for a long time, alone.

third ending summary:

you kill the blond sister with the power of the ugly sister. (if you don't get why, read other summary) You leave, knowing you did a wrong, but it had to be done. You also realize you did other wrongs in your life. you are alone inside and outside.

my personal thoughts:
the tablets

basically, you live on an island called Polykotes, with two optasia bound to the north or south of the island. Apollo protects the new inhabitants(you and the others) from destruction. you were a farm boy, who fell in love with a girl. You learn of the girl when you follow th sound of her singing into the forbidden caves. You fall in love. You keep coming back, but she doesn't come with you. People start to find out you keep leaving, and when asked why, you say you are making maps of the caves, but you can't produce the maps. you are sent to work for 5 year at the shines. you escape, and bring the blond out of the caves. it breaks the pact they had with apollo, causing Boreas and Notus to be able to travel on land, killing all in their paths. most leave on rafts for Knossos. some stay, but they eventually die. before they die, they learn of you being together with the blond, who is also a optasia, with a screeching voice, sounding like honey to you, and only that singing can you hear.

the boy:

(you give him a name)you(the player) hears a singing. you travel to the forbbiden caves and find a blond girl inside. you continue to travel to her, alot. eventually, you are found out. when asked why you travel, you say to make maps, but you can't produce said maps. you are sent to work 5 winters at the shrines. you can't bear to be away from her, and you decide to escape, killing 3 men in the process. either before or after you were sent to the shines, you inquired the girl about her family. she said 'one sister and two brothers'. she never wanted to see them again. you didn't ask about her parents. after you escaped the shrines and found her, you ask her to help you forget what you did that day. Eventually, you bring her into the light, out of the caves. doing so brought destruction to the island, in the form of optasias, those big eye, cyclone monsters. But you don't know about the destruction. she uses magic to change what you see and hear. the notes she leaves you say she is stuck in a cave, wanting you to save her.you don't hear the screams of the other people, only the sounds of the optasia. you don't know anything except he name, you love her, and must find her. you find other notes, which talk about the island. using the glasses(if in expert), you reread the notes the girl left you. you learn the truth about what happened. you can either let her kiss you, replaying the fantasy, leave by means of the raft, or kill her and leave by means of the raft. The game itself is just you reliving the fantasy as many times as you play it.

the girl:

(you give her a name)She is a optasia, the blond girl you are always trying to find (maybe a siren, with her singing, but no proof for this claim). She has two brothers, those big eye, cyclone monsters, and a sister, that blue zombie person who gives you the power to kill an optasia. she and her sister are both more intelligent than their brothers. They were bound underground by the Gods. In order to get out, they needed mortal help. Her sister fled deeper. using her voice, she sang and lured you into her 'prison'. She fell in love with you. When you finally did lead her out of the caves, it broke the balance that kept her brothers from destroying the island and killing all. Using magic, she "changed the story you eyes tell you".(find her when wearing the glasses to see the magic she is using) She erased your memory so you don't rmember anything. She made your ears hear nothing but the sound of her brothers and her. She created a fantasy for you to play. You have to come rescue her from her cave prison darkness and bring her into the light. Her brothers can't harm you. When you find her, she kisses you and the game starts all over (literally, too). You play this game for years. But she does realize what she has done and takes all the blame. She only wishes for you two to be ordinary.

the other girl

she is the sister of the blond. She too was banished underground by the Gods for she was of higher intelligence than her brothers. But unlike her sister, she went deeper into the caves and never came out. When you find her, she gives you the power to kill an optasia by touching one. She gives you this power for her revenge(most likely thinking you will kill her sister, getting the third ending). She is the ugly sister, having a very zombie like appearance of blue skin, dark eyes, and disfigurement.

The two monsters:

Their names are Boreas for the North monster, and Natus for the south monster. They each can only travel halfway across the island, Boreas has top to middle, Natus has south to middle. They look like cyclones with many large eyes spinning around the cyclone.( they were most likely hurricanes scince they were from the sea then went to land, or tornadoes that traveled) They are the brothers of the two sisters, the blond and the zombie-ish one. If they see you, they home-in on you and try to kill you. You can tell if they found you if your screen flashed red, the clouds get dark, wind appears, and an earthquake starts. The more flowers you find, the easier you can be found by them. You know they lost track of you if your screen flashes green. Do this by either leaving their territory or running far enough away. The white tiles hide you from them and if you touch either monster while on the tiles, they become banished and must flee for a while. If you gain the power from the ugly sister, you can kill either one by touching it, but only one. Apollo made a pact with them, saying they weren't allowed on the island. But when the blond sister was lead out of the caves, that pact was broken. They killed all who crossed their path, destroying the civilization that once stood there. Now, they just try to kill you, because that is all they know.

I've found one other tablet written by the boy.

...Sing your song to me once more, Beautiful Katie. It makes the world vanish around me, it enthralls me like nothing else. Birds no longer have voice; the sun no longer shines; the waves freeze in midair. Time halts when you sing. I would love you even if the moon dissappeared from the sky and all other life was extinguished, if we were the only two people in the world...

Anyone else found a cave with absolutly nothing in it? I doubt it is intentional; likely a glitch anyone with a similar experience?
(By the way one of the best games I've played in a good while; love pixely games)

The third ending - where the girl is killed - is the "best" ending despite it being a bitter ending. I'll explain why I think it's so.

It's because she was a coward and preferred to charm him into living a fantasy rather than be sincere and accept that even when she had messed up by releasing her brothers, she had to move on. The evil was done, then what? Why retreat back into the caves? Why not confront her stupid brothers instead? Not to mention that if her brothers were released from their binds on the sea, she could have been cute, free her sister, and try to gain her favor. After all with their brothers out there she had no reason to remain locked up into a cave anymore don't you think?.

OK, so you know the destroy-the-monsters power? Try using it on something it might not work, and do not collect any flowers, any of the two and go to the girl 1#

JlGuest: when it says "try using it on something it might not work" it refers to using the power of the ugly sister on the blond sister - since she is a opastia, she dies.

A story like this, given the proper arrangements, is worth of a movie.

doppelganger spoiler:

if you see the doppelganger and she gives you the power then it DOES NOT protect you from the evil things, it makes the real girl DIE if you speak to her!

for those who complained about not knowing what you would get in the caves, there's a way to know "something"...

I've made some "analysis" using the Console, seeing what where inside it, and it's number (when you enter a cave, the console says "cave [number]"), and I noticed that IN EXPERT ('cause it's different in other levels it's going to be the same in Easy/Medium):
Cave 0 always have Boots, or Compass, or Map, or Crystal Ball, or Ankh, or the "Displaction Whatever", or the Glasses¹
Cave 1, The Same As Above
Cave 2, One Note
Cave 3, Another Note
Cave 4, Blue Key

Blue Doors:
Cave 5, Another Powerup
Cave 6, Another Powerup
Cave 7, Another Note
Cave 8, Purple Key

Purple Doors:
Cave 9, Another Note
Cave 10, Girl²
Cave 11, Girl²

1 - These are the Powerups...

2 - The first cave (10 or 11) you enter will have a Girl, and the other will have the Twin... When I entered in one of these, in the Console showed "Replacing Girl In Other Cave With Twin"

3 - I BELIEVE it's right, but i can't guarantee 100%... it's not because it happened the most of times, that it will ALWAYS happen...

if you want to see exactly what i got and in which cave:
Game 1

Cave 0 = Ankh
Cave 1 = Compass
Cave 2 = Note "I Know how hard this is"
Cave 3 = Note "[name], Keep Trying"

Game 2

Cave 1 = Crystal Ball
Cave 2 = Note "2"
Cave 4 = Blue Key
Cave 5 = (Blue Door) Glasses
Cave 7 = (Blue Door) Note 5
Cave 8 = (Blue Door) Purple Key

Game 3

Cave 0 = Telep.
Cave 1 = Map
Cave 2 = Note "Just a little further" (Note 2)
Cave 3 = Note "I Know how hard this is" (Note 4)
Cave 4 = Blue Key
Cave 5 = (Blue Door) Glasses
Cave 6 = (Blue Door) Crystal Ball
Cave 7 = (Blue Door) Note "[name], Keep Trying" (Note 5)
Cave 8 = (Blue Door) Purple Key
Cave 9 = (Purple Door) Note 5
(Note: Two "Note 5"? I thing there's something wrong)

Game 4

Cave 1 = Map
Cave 2 = Note "Just a little further"
Cave 3 = Note "Note "[name], I Know how hard this is"
Cave 4 = Blue Key
Cave 6 = (Blue Door) Crystal Ball
Cave 7 = (Blue Door) Note "[name], Keep Trying"
Cave 8 = (Blue Door) Purple Key
Cave 9 = (Purple Door) Note "[name], Don't Give Up"
Cave 10 = (Purple Door) Twin (I got there AFTER cave 11)
Cave 11 = (Purple Door) Girl (Message in Console: Replacing Girl In Other Cave With Twin)

Game 5

Cave 0 = Glasses

Game 6

Cave 2 = Note "[name], I Miss You Terribly"
Cave 3 = Note "Just a little further"

Game 7

Cave 0 = Boots
Cave 1 = Compass
Cave 2 = Note "[name], Keep Trying"
Cave 3 = Note "[name], I Miss You Terribly"
Cave 4 = Blue Key?
Cave 5 = (Blue Door) Ankh
Cave 6 = (Blue Door) Crystal Ball
Cave 7 = (Blue Door) Note "[name], Don't Give Up"
Cave 8 = (Blue Door) Purple Key
Cave 9 = (Purple Door) Note "I Know How Hard It Is"
Cave 10 = Twin (after cave 11 again)
Cave 11 = Girl (Message in Console: Replacing Girl In Other Cave With Twin)

Glitch?
I had both the Ankh and was on a tile, but Notus killed me!

Great gaming and absolutely loved the bits and pieces of story it gives you. The randomly generated maps can be frustrating, but that's just how they are, and they add a lot to the feeling of the game and even ties into the story.

I agree with most people's interpretations already stated,

especially about the wishing there was a fourth ending that involved staying with the girl, but not repeating her endless game. And about the purple sister. I had the feeling that she jealous of the relationship her sister has with the player, and wants to sabotage it, more then that she was punishing her sister for breaking the rules.

Probably the single best game review I've ever read. Great job.

I wanna play, but the two attempts I made scared the bejeezus out of me. This seems like a fascinating game, but I think I'd better leave playing it to the braver JIG patrons. Thanks to everyone who's described the plot, I've enjoyed reading the story!

There's a Glitch in one ending. I didn't get any flowers for her and she told me a story and then asked me to choose her or escape. I got the raft THEN walked over to her to see if she said any thing else, and I got the ending where you LOSE all your flowers (as opposed to simply not picking any).

If anyone knows who exactly made this game or how to contact them, I'd like to send them a message on how to improve the game. As in, adding the fourth ending, possibly reworking the dead-end system, and so on. This is a great game, but it feels unfinished.

[The links in the review above take you right to the authors' (TwoFoldSecret) website. Just above the game window is an Email link that you can use to contact them. If it were any bigger it would probably jump out and bite you. :) -Jay]

i just had a play-through of sheer luck. It took about two seconds. I mean, it was on easy mode but come on! I found myself staring TWO STEPS away from a sancutuary that was TWO STEPS away from a sancutuary that was a quick, straight-lined scurry away from a cave. My first cave, which just so happened to have Angela in it. I wish I was so lucky in real life.

(Boy's name), I know how hard this is, and I know you will be able
to persevere through it. You are braver than you think.

Each spirit of the island is bound to a portion of it.
If you are being pursued, you may be able to escape it
by fleeing its territory.

--(Girl's name)

Sethum - wrong. They optasia still move while you read a tablet, and they will see you and begin to chase you.

And I have a problem - I checked all the caves (obtained the compass...and the glasses) and they were all either locked or did *not* have a key!

How am I supposed to find a key to open blue/purple doors?

link needs updating.

Site not found..
Holy cow, what is this?!?!?

The developer's site has been redesigned in the four years since this review was written. :) The link has been updated.

^ Scroll Up | Homepage >

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