Is it possible to recommend a game to someone if you don’t understand it? This is the question I have pondered for the latest Video Game Spotlight. After some time debating the answer I came to the conclusion that, yes, it is possible.
Welcome to Video Game Spotlight, a series where I provide some attention to little-known new releases. This entry’s game is Asemblance, released in 2016 for Steam and Playstation 4. It was developed by Nilo Studios and is the company’s first game.
For a first game, Nilo went all out to create a compelling experience that will leave you asking questions and wanting to know more. It was pretty evident that the developers put a lot of love into the project. What may seem simple at first transitions into something that challenges your sanity.
I walked away from this game enthralled but with no sense of what had happened. Does this say anything against the game? No. I simply couldn’t piece together the game’s intent or story, but that is what makes Asemblance so fascinating.
You are pushed to try and figure out the game’s intent and figure out the narrative. Luckily this narrative is meant to be confusing. Asemblance is a story about memories – you explore the memories of your character to try and figure out their story.
What starts as a peaceful stroll up a small mountain filled with flowers with an AI remarking that “you always liked this memory” turns into something darker. As you begin to explore further memories and piece together some of the inconsistencies, you see the reason for your troubled memories. Something happened to your wife and you must find doors in your memories to find the truth from your own false memories.
The story is really involving as you are forced to explore and figure out what links your memories. What don’t you want to remember? What are you hiding? At the end of the game I had no idea but was still moved by this journey.
Sometimes a game doesn’t have to make sense to be recommended. Sometimes a game can be nothing more than a pleasant stroll as it challenges you to uncover the missing links in a story. You question how the game affects you and causes you to think about your own memories.
If you are looking for an interesting psychological thriller then look no further than Asemblance. You may leave asking yourself what on earth just happened but you can still say you had a wonderful time.
Asemblance pushes you to explore and captivates you to the bitter end to uncover the truth in your false memories, or at least to find your own truth. What did happen to your wife? Can you find the answers among your fragmented mind?
If you see this game on sale, pick it up. I can’t recommend Asemblance at full price, but on sale there is no excuse not to purchase and explore it. With its perplexing narrative and interesting gameplay mechanics, Asemblance is a little-known experience that needs to be experienced by more.
What are you trying to hide, what are you trying to forget, what secrets lie in the scattered remnants of your mind? Explore Asemblance and you may be inspired to find out.
Featured image courtesy The Vertical Slice.