Highlighted during the PlayStation Blog‘s celebration of upcoming indie games, Where The Heart Leads is a narrative adventure starring a man who gains the ability to revisit parts of his past in order to potentially change his future. It will be releasing for both PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5 on July 13, 2021.
Described by Armature Studio co-founder Todd Keller as a game “where you, the player, make choices that change your world,” Where the Heart Leads stars a man named Whit who accidentally embarks on a journey through time. The choices Whit makes throughout the game will greatly affect his future success or failure, relationship with his family, direction in life, and much, much more. Where The Heart Leads features hundreds of choices leading to multiple endings across greatly varied branching paths.
According to Keller, Where The Heart Leads was inspired by other games including Heavy Rain, Oxenfree and Xenogears, as well as the films of David Lynch and Wes Anderson. Although it is primarily narrative-based, with over 600,000 words of text, the game will also feature puzzle and even action segments. It was originally designed to be completed in about five hours, but the final result is nearly twice that. Players will discover only a fraction of the story each time they play the game, encouraging multiple playthroughs to experience the many paths which Whit’s life may follow.
A new trailer released on YouTube shows off one major choice which Whit can make in the game: selling or developing a piece of land inherited by his wife Rene. One outcome shows the family living in a suburban home, while the other sees Whit embarking on a solitary lifestyle as an artist in the woods. A simple choice, such as how to respond to your wife during an argument, can result in such wildly different futures in this narratively rich game.
If you’re interested, check out the trailer below: