Rusty Lake, the studio, have for years been creating some of the spookiest, most bizarre, and engrossing puzzle games. Becoming known for their incredible series of (free) short mobile games, Cube Escape, they then moved into full-length Lynchian creep-fests like Rusty Lake Hotel, Rusty Lake Paradise, The White Door, and Samsara Room. Their latest, The Past Within, is a local co-op puzzler, where two people play different versions of the game at the same time.
The trailer, which just went live, is quite the thing:
I had a quick chat with Rusty Lake to find out some more. The game, very clearly set in the Rusty Lake universe, will require two different people to be playing simultaneously to work. However, rather than a traditional co-op, where each person works directly with the other on-screen, in The Past Within the two people playing will see completely different versions of the game.
By sharing information between them, they’ll be able to solve what look like a familiar style of puzzles for the series—code gathering, locked boxes, peculiar inventory objects, and...oh god oh god what was that looking through the window did you see its eyes what the hell was going on with its eyes?
Both players will need their own copy of the game, although—while a price has yet to be announced—their games are usually very low priced. The developers tell me that the game won’t use an online connection between the players, designed instead to be played while chatting, whether that’s in the same room, or over Discord.
I also asked if they’ve found a way cause fucking antlered monstrosities to appear at my real-life window, suggesting that if any developer could it’d be those bastards. “Haha, we might have,” they said. The “Haha” didn’t convince me.
The game is due in the second quarter of next year, and looks like the most ambitious game from the studio since their movie/game crossover, Paradox.