Step aside, April Ryan. It's time for a new protagonist able to bridge parallel worlds. Or at least, it soon will be if indie developer Miguel H. Death's Nocturnal Visitors is able to reach its modest crowdfunding goal.
Not unlike The Longest Journey, this game stars a teenaged protagonist. Here, however, it's a sixteen-year-old boy named Jamie, who unwittingly finds himself transported to an alternate version of his own world called Aliorbis, a place "controlled by a god-like being called the Holy Entity" and where "magic and science coexist" in relative harmony. Jamie soon discovers he is what's known as a "Visitor," a person who is able to "cross the barrier that separates both versions of Earth." Due to his special ability, Jamie is "recruited by SEEK, an organisation that investigates crimes that [pose] a threat to both worlds." But all is not nearly as utopian as it seems on Aliorbis, which begins to "show signs of a dark and twisted past filled with dread, corruption and chaos. A past that everyone in SEEK wants to remain hidden."
Made with RPG Maker MV, Nocturnal Visitors may look like a retro-styled keyboard- or gamepad-controlled roleplaying game, but its focus is on telling a story on two different levels. The more obvious one is the tale of Jamie's adventures on Aliorbis, but beneath the overt plot is a subtext about "the process of constructing a story." The Holy Entity represents "the tortured artist" who is "the creator of Aliorbis and responsible for all the stories that take place in it." After losing control of its creation, however, the author of all things has "decided to abandon it, and now has come back to finish it for good." If that description has decidedly spriritual overtones, that too is no coincidence, as the game "tackles religion in an unbiased and respectable way."
Nocturnal Visitors represents just the first of five planned adventures, to be released yearly through 2025. To help pay for licensing fees, the developer has started a Kickstarter campaign to raise a modest €300 by November 12th. If all goes well, we should see the game launched early next year on Windows, Mac and Linux, with an Android port being considered as well. There's no need to wait that long for a first look, however, as a playable demo is available now to download.