A Game Where You Have To Talk Characters Out Of Committing Suicide

Illustration for article titled A Game Where You Have To Talk Characters Out Of Committing Suicide

What if someone on the verge of suicide came to you, and you had to talk them out of it? Could you do it? That's what Inner Vision, a choice driven narrative game, gives you as a challenge.

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There are three characters, each with a different set of problems. Someone is wrestling with their sexuality and acceptance. Another feels they are a failure. The last character has a drug addiction.

You interact with each person, and while you chat, you have two chances to mess the conversation up. Two mistakes and that's it, game over. They move forward with their suicide plans.

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It seems strange (if not uncomfortable) to have such a touchy subject be posed to you as a puzzle to solve: say the right thing and you can save them—but still, it is a role some people are familiar with. Sometimes a person needs someone to talk to, and sometimes the stakes of those conversations are high.

While playing I think the game acknowledges the weirdness a bit though—there's a fourth person that appears between the suicidal characters, who comments on your progress through the game. Cynically, at one point, he says your job was to prevent suicide—not to care for the characters. At another point, he asks you if you're having fun.

I wouldn't describe the game as fun, but it's certainly interesting (if not, at times, a bit simplistic). "I created it for myself to express some dying thoughts I've had for the past several months," the developer, Sunil Rao, wrote on his blog.

You can play the game here.

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DISCUSSION

IgnoreAllOfMyComments

Here's what I really wanted to say to the person as I was 'playing':

"You are so selfish, you have me here with your life as my implicitly agreed responsibility, and you go on this conversation like it only has any bearing on you and no effect on me. You don't want things to get better, you want the world to fall exactly in place, exactly how you thought it would so that you can know that sometimes what happens in your head works 'out there' just as you had hoped it would. If I say the wrong thing, you will kill yourself. Do you understand the responsibility I have in this conversation? Do the concerns of others have no bearing on how you make choices in your life?"