What happens after you die? Is there an afterlife? Perhaps even a plane of existence somewhere between life and death? These are some of the thought-provoking questions being explored in Aza Game Studio's upcoming psychological horror adventure, Deep Rest.
Players control a young girl whose mother has fallen into a deep coma. In this state, her mother's spirit has been overtaken by an "overwhelming darkness" and become trapped in a "mysterious world – a world unknown to man." Unaware of what's happening to her mother's soul but overcome by despair, the girl commits suicide only to find her own spirit awaken in the same "surrealistic world of Deadwood." Now, "engulfed by the mysterious forest that keeps changing shape and form," you must begin exploring to "figure out why you are stuck here, and what has happened to your mother. Did you kill yourself for nothing?" And all the while, "Deadwood's deathly void draws ever nearer."
Deep Rest is a keyboard-and-mouse controlled side-scroller described as a "psychological adventure horror game, with focus on storytelling both direct and indirect." Each of the game's seven chapters features its own distinctly surreal landscape and colour palette ranging from black and white to blood-red to almost cheerily vivid pastels. Gameplay promises to combine different genre mechanics, including some light platforming and the ability to reverse time and "slice 2D objects with spirit energy." While the levels themselves may be physically linear, the narrative is not, as players will be able to "make dramatic changes in the story" through various dialogue choices that will lead to multiple possible endings.
There is no solid release date for Deep Rest just yet, but the game is due to be launched on Steam for Windows PC sometime later this year. In the meantime, you can download a short demo that's light on gameplay but will intoduce the premise, basic controls, and the kind of disturbingly macabre atmosphere you can expect from the full version when finished.