Into The Black

intotheblack

A light/dark horror with psychological elements that combines disparate gameplay mechanics tied solely by a unifying conceptual theme

(made under 8 days during Fishing Jam — May 2013)

Theme: Fishing

Genre: Psychological Light/Dark Horror

Status: Prototype (possible revisions in the future)

NGF Awards 2013 “Student Category” Finalist
Where You Can Play It:

Into The Black can be played for free and is available for PC or it can be played directly via a Web browser(no installation required).

Concept:

Into The Black is a light/dark based horror with psychological elements. You have taken a dive into your depressed mind(the ocean) and are constantly being pushed downwards by your brain(the fisher). Negate the downward force and find light in the darkness before it’s too late.

Built with the purpose to combine a bunch of disparate mechanics that are solely tied by a unifying conceptual themeWhile this may be considered to be a “bad” design practice, making a decent conceptually cohesive game out of it was the only purpose of this prototype/experiment.

Objective

  • Find ways to reduce the constant force pushing you down in the pitch darkness of your mind before you hit the rock bottom.
  • There will be ways to increase it and ways to decrease it.You move your mouse around but initially only a small part of the screen(the inside of your mind) is lit. Everything else is pitch black.
  • Your mind’s insecurities (better called as “MIND”) spawn randomly in the darkness.
  • A “happy person” will spawn all colourful and surrounded by light speaking words of positivity but meanwhile slowly but steadily moving towards the mind.

It’s basically a race of who reaches there first. The twist is you cannot see the mind hidden in darkness. sample3

You can either: Either of these two cases can happen:

  • If you reach to the “Mind” first, your downward force decreases and LIGHT gets spawned so now you can see more of the screen
  • If “Happy” reaches to the “Mind” first, then your downward force increases and LIGHT gets destroyed. So now, you are in more darkness than you were before — basically describing how positive people do more harm than good in such times
  • You collect colourful balloons to reduce the constant force temporarily. The more balloons you collect, the more force you decrease
  • Chains get anchored to your feet and drag you down with an increase in force. (of the mind).
  • On top of all this, there are the above-mentioned jellyfish-like creatures who constantly move towards you — taunting you. This is basically the part of your own mind you need to stay far from. If you come in contact with them, you freeze/become numb for a few seconds, thus putting you at a disadvantage in racing first to the “Mind”

Instructions
Negate the downward force by:

  • Collecting balloons
  • Reaching to the insecurities of your mind hidden in the darkness BEFORE the “Happy” people do(also creates more light in the darkness)

Downward force increases with:

  • Happy” people reaching to the “Mind” before you do (also destroys a light creating more darkness)
  • Chains get anchored to your feet dragging you further down
  • If you come in contact with Jellyfish-like creatures who stalk and taunt you

Victory:

If you reach ZERO force before you hit the bottom

Lose:

If you hit the bottom

 

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