When a videogame gets delayed it can come across as a bad omen, that the developers were naive in their initial estimations as new problems arose. That’s not always the case though, with some studios wishing to add extra polish and shine to a title to make it just so. That seems to have been the case with Artifact 5 and its introspective adventure title Anamorphine which now has a new launch date.
Anamorphine comes across as a surreal title of sorts, with a story about mental health, relationships, and reflection that focuses on experience over traditional gameplay.
The main protagonist is Tyler who struggles with guilt and post-traumatic denial after his wife Elena falls victim to an accident leaving her unable to play the cello―an activity that represents both her livelihood and emotional outlet. Elena quietly slips into depression as Tyler revisits the milestones of their relationship and attempts to overcome painful memories warped by his troubled psyche.
Certainly one of those titles that’s hard to describe, it was one of the few to make it into VRFocus’ Best HTC Vive Games Coming In 2018 list alongside Sprint Vector, Apex Construct, In Death and others. The entire story is told with no dialogue or action button, the narrative comes together through Tyler’s dream-like memories, contorting and bleeding into each other with his mental state.
To get a better idea of what the hell is going on in Anamorphine take a look at the video below. NoClip’s Danny O’Dwyer sat down with Artifact 5’s Samantha Cook to talk about mental health in videogames and the route the studio took with Anamorphine’s own design.