Many games are using their platform to explore taboo subjects. These once unspeakable areas are becoming easier to talk about and therefore acceptable to form the backbone of many stories. Reminiscence in the Night is one such title that uses multiple challenging ideas at its core.
Developed by Team SolEtude and published by Ratalaika Games, this is an emotional visual novel. A short but complex tale awaits any player who wishes to take on this touching story. Focusing on “the butterfly effect,” every choice and interaction influences the plot. Moreover, you’ll experience multiple outcomes while unravelling the surrounding mystery.
Reminiscence in the Night is short but in-depth.
I’ve played an array of visual novels and Reminiscence in the Night is by far the shortest yet. However, this doesn’t mean it’s unworthy of your time. No, its multiple endings and many plot twists are captivating. Its unusual subject matter won’t be a comfortable experience for many, yet I loved how the story evolved.
Set in a tiny house, the protagonist awakens to find she has no memory of what has happened. Desperate to discover who she is and what has happened, she explores her tiny abode. Interacting with the objects around her and communicating with Sofia, her childhood friend, the protagonist, pieces together her past while living through painful memories.
Many choices in its minuscule plot.
Though I was left disappointed by the length of each story, the number of choices impressed me. With many objects to interact with, you influence the plot with the smallest of gestures. Will you caress your teddy bear, or will you play a tune on your guitar? Whichever you select will impact your dialogue choice with the few people in your life.
As the story evolves and your memory floods back to you, you will enter a dreamlike world hidden within your mirror. This bizarre look at your personality is twisted and dark and leads to some uneasy moments. Subsequently, the sombre and chilling imagery is reminiscent of a nightmare state.
The source of the protagonist’s sorrow is clarified beautifully when you converse with her mother over the phone. I will not ruin the plot for you, but her nightmarish visions are justified as her haunting past catches up with her.
Reminiscence in the Night uses sobering imagery.
Its many touching aspects require a well thought out approach and fortunately, the developers have done just that. Its sobering imagery reflects the challenging nature of the story and I enjoyed how the emotions were emphasised in each scene. With a mainly cool colour palette, the serene atmosphere matched the slow pace of the plot. However, when moments of drama or high tension were called for, vivid tones were implemented. Alongside this, shadowy characters and an oppressive style were incorporated to enhance the nightmarish twist.
The audio was perfectly balanced to support the touching art style. A blend of calm piano songs was punctuated by heavier tunes that put you on edge. With such a short story to experience, it would have been easy to incorporate a minimal approach. Fortunately, however, the developers matched the multiple endings with an array of different songs. Sadly, there is no acting, nor is there a selection of sound effects to enjoy. I would have liked the developers to have explored this avenue, as I believe it would have enhanced the gameplay further.
A nice point and click approach.
Strangely, the developers have incorporated a point and click approach to their gameplay. This freedom to select any interactive item on-screen was excellent. I loved searching each room for clues to this strange story and it was rewarding when you progressed the story. Like other visual novels, it’s easy to select between dialogue options and this helps to make sure the gameplay flows nicely. There are also the usual choices to skip text, speed up the game, and so forth. This was excellent, as it prevented the gameplay from becoming stale when revisiting scenes.
You may think that a short game has no longevity. However, in Reminiscence in the Night, this isn’t the case. Thanks to its multiple endings, there is plenty to draw you back in. You’ll experience an array of emotions as you discover secrets surrounding each character. I loved how the story evolved and the pace at which it was delivered.
Reminiscence in the Night will be too harrowing for some.
A dark and sombre plot isn’t going to appeal to everyone. In fact, I’d say that Reminiscence in the Night will be too harrowing for some. If you can cope with the uncomfortable subject matter, you’ll experience a quick but deep tale. I enjoyed its twists and turns and recommend you to buy it here! Uncover the mystery of your past to discover who you are.