Many independent game studios focus on making their games slightly more wacky and bizarre than the triple A market will allow for, giving a wider variety of well-made titles that people stumble across. Even though we love video games that are full of comedy and light-hearted moments, games that touch on darker themes related to the psychology of the mind are some of the most loved in recent years.
Neverending Nightmares is an experience created from the developer, Matthew Gilgenbach’s, battle with depression and OCD. It’s a psychological survival experience that was hailed by many as genuinely chilling in its execution and feel upon release. Themes about depression and other mental health problems in popular media are few and far between, since the issues related to the discussion seem to be a taboo.
In terms of gameplay and narrative, you fill the pajamas of Thomas Smith, a young man who is suffering from seemingly permanent night terrors. As you move through the levels, slowly, because you won’t want to run, you begin to understand just how awful it could be to stuck inside your own mind.
The game itself uses a unique, hand drawn, black and white art style that really brings out the vivid colour when some does occasionally appear. Mixed together with the terrifying audio, which is a range of harrowing soundtracks and chilling effects, Neverending Nightmares defines itself as one of the most tragically beautiful games available.
If you’re looking for an indie title that will shake your sense of safety and probably rip out your heart at the end, play this game. However, if you’re looking for something that doesn’t feature true, raw psychological horror; avoid this like the plague.
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