Wire Wood Daughters
Do you remember when you used to go visit your friend? They lived deep in the woods, just across the old railroad tracks in their house. It was always a long walk to get there but well worth it, even if your mother didn't exactly approve. And so is the premise of Rook's Wirewood Daughters. You'll want to grab your headphones and turn the volume up for this one as you drift through the ephemeral puzzle world. The soundtrack will haunt you, and as you progress through the game, a girl's voice narrates the backstory. You pick up object after object - random, typical things and yet wonder if they carry and sort of significance in this very surreal walk through the woods.
The areas are not connected in a linear way, so there's no backtracking in this piece, nor is it truly a metroidvania. But in some way, I think this aspect enhances the game rather than hinders it, allowing the player to focus on the storytelling rather than navigating a labyrinth. The game can be played completely using the arrow keys, and features a few quick-time events, but is mostly atmospheric and exploration based.
For the most part I loved this game, but as one major area for improvement I would have to suggest the addition of subtitles. It can be a little frustrating to try and make out the words as the recording is somewhat distorted. Then again, perhaps that's just what the author intended - to give us something slightly so close and yet so far, bordering between real and surreal - yet just out of reach. You'll have to check out Wirewood Daughters and see for yourself.