Description of the video:
The background looks like space. Words appear slowly.
“The moment that I knew you were gone, my heart was split in two.”
There is an illustration of a heart breaking.
“And I have to give up these little memories just to make it through the day.”
“I needed the orchids. I’d regret it if I didn’t go. It was already a busy day. A two-hour drive was too much on short notice. There wasn’t enough time. I just went with the lillies.”
“You smiled and said… I remember last summer. You were running towards me, your face beaming with pride.”
“It was emotionally overwhelming.”
“The reception was packed. I appreciated everyone being there, but all I could think about was getting a chance to rest.”
A dot moves to different locations.
“We’re sorry for your loss.” “You should cherish her memory.” “Stay strong.” “Our thoughts and prayers are with you.” “What did she know?” “Her dad had just died.” “But it was not the same.”
“I keep these memories close to my heart.”
“Give up some of your soul to help?”
Fades to black.
“Soul” is an interactive allegory of grief that explores the aftermath of the first year after the tragic loss of one woman’s daughter, Ani.
Graduate student Kees Luyendijk developed the game as his thesis project. Ethan Helfrich created the music, and Rajin Shankar was the technical artist.
The project focuses on how the design of mechanics and interactions can be used to support players in becoming co-creators of the story being told through the game. This is achieved through branching narrative and interaction points that adapt the narrative to reflect actions the player takes, allowing the player to find his or her own path while helping a grieving mother work through difficult emotions.