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Reviews for "The Darkness Within Me"

So, this game is alright. It is a tad cliché and obvious in the way it treats the whole "five stages of grief" trope. The way the character talks makes him a pretty believable depressive teenager, and his story might be relatable to many people out there who lost loved ones through tragic untimely deaths.

The graphics are minimal. Not pixel-retro minimal, but rather vector-monochrome minimal. That's not necessarily bad, sceneries don't always need detail, especially not in such an abstract game. However, given that this is the kind of "atmosphere first, gameplay second" game, I feel like the presentation could do with a bit more polish.

The gameplay itself consists on exploring this short, dangerless platforming map looking for a red cross, which then triggers a cutscene where the main character talks to one of his internal voices, then repeating and searching for the next cross to advance the storyline. The crosses are occasionally placed in spots that make sense within the storyline, such as the last cross (placed by the chapel right after the characters talk about a funeral), and looking for them is thankfully never too much of a chore. The gameplay works fine for the story the game is meant to tell, but if we were to consider the mechanics by themselves, they feel rather empty and bland.

As far as the story goes, I'm sure it's highly relatable to people who suffered (or still suffer) from depression and grief in their teenage years, including all the toxic medications psychiatrists make people take, the usage of self-harm as an attempt to make the emotional pain go away and finding escape in one's own thoughts. Thankfully, I've never gone through such a phase myself, but whoever is going through these problems has all my sympathy, and I dread the thought of such a thing happening to a loved one. I'm sure I'd enjoy this story more if it hit closer to home, but since it (luckily) doesn't, I found it a bit disengaging.

Now, one thing I like about the dialog writing is the way the character talks. Always ridden with gloomy lines and curse words, it does shout "depressed teenager" to anyone playing the game, and that's the best point of the character writing in my opinion: it portrays the character the story is meant to portray very well.

The game's story also plays with the "five stages of grief" trope, as I mentioned before. Denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. The way the story uses those five stages is made a tad bit too obvious to be interesting, unfortunately. When you use the actual words the stages represent in each step of the way, it becomes a rather forced way to explore the trope. Sorry.

So, all things considered, while I was rather disengaged by this game's story and gameplay, it's pretty obvious this game was not meant for me, so I really can't judge it based on my experience alone. I'd recommend this to any person in their teens who happens to be stricken with depression or tragedy, it might do them good to see that they're not alone, and that a character in an interactive experience understands their pain and reflects on it, in a format that's easy for the external world to see and attempt to comprehend. It might even help people connect with others who've had similar experiences and help each other out.

I couldn't possibly give this a low score based on my experience alone, that'd be the most selfish and unsympathetic thing to do. Based on how I infer this could touch the lives of people, I'm giving this a 3.5. It might be just what some people need to feel better about their problems, or otherwise reflect on their situation.

Something Mysotsis could prevent.

I loved the contrast of the aesthetics between the characters during dialog and the game play. I thought that was fun, and it kept me interested. I did think the dialog itself seemed very cliche angry teenager -- which very well could have been intentional since the main character is an angry teenager. However, I did feel like there was tremendous room for better character development and stronger symbolism through gameplay.

I definitely didn't hate playing through it though.

This is alright. Really cliche in some of the dialogue and the whole "Adam and Eve" thing (especially since that wasn't developed into a larger theme, making it seem pointless). Since this obviously is a game that you would play for the story or art, the art and and story should be pretty good. Right on both accounts except for the somewhat cliched dialogue. The ending art made me laugh, sorry....The eyes were a little funky. I really liked the music; it set a nice tone. Maybe should be a bit more difficulty, change of setting, flashbacks, a twist, something, because honestly running around for 15-20 min looking for red crosses got pretty boring after a while. But overall I liked it.

Wow, this game was deep and emotional. Your games never fails to touch me (not in that way), and I really enjoy reading the dialogues in the game.

All the metaphors are so well written, which adds an even stronger impact towards any player who is reading, and can really pull us in to the story. The only thing I'd wish for is that the game was longer, and the map wasn't too small. The artwork is simplistic, but fine.

Great game!