AMONG THE SLEEP
By Diana "DumeeGamer" Dumee on July 19, 2016
Do you remember how scary it could be to go to sleep when you were a child? Seeing monsters in the shadows at night, afraid of the monster under your bed? And did you just hear someone in your closet?
I remembered it all last weekend while playing the latest game by Krillbite and Soedesco: Among the Sleep. The first game ever (as far as I know) that lets you play as a two year old child. This brings a couple of nice features to this game, one of which is a somewhat different point of view than weíre used to. Being a toddler, everything around you actually looks larger than life. A chair is no longer something you just sit on, but rather something to be climbed or used as a ladder. The developers did a great job creating the world through the eyes of a two year old.
You can walk around but because youíre just learning how to walk youíre not that stable on your two feet just yet. So I if you want to be fast, you can easily switch to crawling. And as you progress in the game, you really have to be fast sometimes. Why does a two year old have to be fast, I hear you all ask? (Besides hurrying up when their parents need to go and are already late) Well, I donít want to spoil anything, but when thereís some creatures making scary noises behind you, or at least you think something is, you definitely donít want to get caught.
The game starts with your second birthday. You get cake and a present! So far so good, donít you think? Soon, itís time for bed and this is exactly where the shit hits the fan. Your Teddy is snatched away from you and someone stumbled over your bed. And on top of it all, your mom is missing! Luckily for you your Teddy is soon found. This is a very good thing because he can talk and he can help you on your way to find your mommy. And if things get really scary or too dark for your taste, you can always give him a big hug and he will light your path.
The world of Among the Sleep is not limited to just your bedroom and house, but everything has the same eerie aspect; you know that something definitely isnít right. The places you visit sometimes reminded me of the setting of American MCGeeís Alice. Toys lying around and the fine line between dark and light, or, reality and fantasy.
On your quest to find your mother, you will come across a number of puzzles you will have to solve and objects youíll have to find. Puzzles can be something relatively simple like a gate you want to open, but you can reach the handle. Youíll have to make use of your environment to go on. Other times, you might need to collect certain objects, make your way through paintings or figure out how to get out of a level.
Although the story of the game deals with quite a difficult theme, it luckily never has that obvious (not to mention obnoxious) ďmessageĒ moment. Mix in the innocence and worldview of a two year old, and you get exactly what Among the Sleep is: a thrilling experience with some good story telling and a soft side. And, most of all, a really, really, really great game! It keeps you on the edge of your seat the entire time; thereís the constant threat, like danger could be lurking around every corner, but without throwing a jump scare at you every 5 nanoseconds. The world through the eyes of a toddler is beautifully created and looks awesome! Among the Sleep is a relatively short game; I finished it in just under four hours. But donít let that stand in your way of playing it, because sometimes things donít need more than that to make a lasting impression!