Grief is a strong sentiment that can break both one’s heart and one’s mind. Yet, more often than not, people perceive their consequences and persevere even in the face of grievances as large as the loss of someone close. While there are others whose pride and ego separates them from social bonds while grief envelopes them completely.
“It Takes Time” is a top down interactive narrative based game that takes the player through the elegance of human emotion. It depicts the story of a young, hard-working journalist Sophia, whose foresight into a dark future causes her to panic. The novelty in the game is in the way it elucidates the five stages of grief one goes through.
Each day in Sophia’s timeline is a metaphoric representation of the emotion she goes through as she nears her fate. It conveys the emotion through various means such as the subtle changes in Sophia’s home environment, her actions and behavior, and (in the future) the background music.
Another important feature the game aims to enlighten is the role that social interactions and friends play during a person’s recovery from such an event. The game achieves that by correlating the various mood changes Sophia goes through after having conversations with her friends and family at the end of every day.
The game is a cusp of dialogue and mini-games that portray Sophia’s emotions and her interaction with her world as she gets closer and closer to the fate she does not want to encounter. The aim is to make the player empathize and sympathize with her conditions giving them an insight of what a grieving person’s world may feel like. We hope that these experiences find their way into player’s real life so his/her nature towards people going through grief may be positively influenced.
And the game begins:
With mini-games in our game, we wanted to experiment something new. We wanted to give players an illusion of choice. Though their choices didn’t make any impact on the end results, we wanted to see what kind of emotional developments occur in a player when presented with two options quite opposite of each other.
Apart from just these cues about the mental state of Sophia, we even implemented few trigger points which helps brings forth the emotional state of Sophia and thus making the player feel more attached to the protagonist’s state. Some of these were, her reaction on noticing the time at home, the weather outside. All these things were scripted so as to be in sync with player’s state of mind. (Depression)
And that’s our game which attempts to take you and relate with Sophia on her journey through the 5 Stages of Grief: Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression and Acceptance. Apart from just setting the tone of narration and dialogues, we try to achieve our goal even by the background music in our game which changes according to the protagonist’s state of mind.