About the Game
June 18, 2020
(MAY VARY PER LOCATION)
Locked in the darkness of a coma, you dream. In the recesses of your mind, voices call you home, beckoning you towards the light and the void beyond. But it is not your time. Not yet.
Waking is a uniquely personal journey of self reflection and remembrance combining third person exploration and real-world meditation. Traverse the twisted pathways of your mind in a quest to wake, and make choices that…. (continues…)
Step 1: Playing Conditions
Read below the game basic characteristics. If it is something you see yourself playing, move on to Step 2: Graphics & Sound.
Waking is a gamified SELF-REFLECTION EXERCISE, that has 2 big parts: gameplay and meditation. Being the main character of the story, you will fight your way out of a coma by killing mobs and rebuilding memories. You will run, pick-up objects, aim, shoot, and continuously select different spells to fight.
As objectives are completed, a voice asks you to CLOSE YOUR EYES and invites you to travel deeply into YOUR PERSONAL MEMORIES. Waking is not a traditional action-adventure gaming experience. To experience the game as it is meant to be you need to be opened to a self-reflection experience.
Step 2: Graphics & Sound
Watch 5 to 10 minutes of any video below. If you like what you see and hear, move on to Step 3: Game Evaluation.
Step 3: Game Evaluation
Build your expectations about the game by learning what it offers and how was The Partisan Spy’s experience.
The game interface feels OUTDATED and impacts the pace of the gameplay. From the game menus to the HUD numerous things BREAK THE FLOW of the game combat.
For example, to use abilities you need to browse and select from a list. As the game progress, new abilities are added to a point of having more than 20 options. So, the further you go, the more menu scrolling has to be done.
The story is the HEART of Waking and your personal memories fill in its gaps. Names of spells, companions, relics, and memories are all given by you. As mentioned before, part of the story is told as your eyes are closed and you are REVISITING YOUR OWN MEMORIES.
The other part is told by cutscenes and a voice-over that speaks an unknown language, so some reading is necessary.
As a PVE game and not seen by the community as a big title, Waking shows NO POTENTIAL to create and sustain a player base. The roguelike elements of the game and the non-linear level progression makes a bit hard to create and share walkthrough content. Beyond that, the game is based on exploring your deepest thoughts and not everyone is willing to share or talk about these kinds of experiences.
GAMEPLAY MOOD TRACKER
Waking is a great example of how the gameplay experience influences players’ involvement in a game story. In the first hours, when gameplay was being learned and everything was new my connection to the game was huge. But AS GAMEPLAY BECAME REPETITIVE it slowly pushed me away from the self-reflection experience. The opposite probably wouldn’t happen as the gameplay can sustain average storytelling.
The grind feeling starts being present after you figure out the game and all its variations. It becomes REPETITIVE FROM MID-GAME TO THE END as it lacks novelty in most of its elements. Enemies are the same from start to end, abilities and stages environment have a really small variation or none variation. The roguelike element of the game counts towards the feeling as death means restarting the stage.
LIKED THE MOST
The beginning of the game was really intense, it took me to special memories.
HATED THE MOST
Having to scroll up and down in search of abilities and items over and over again. Item wheels could make the game much more dynamic.
When thinking of buying a game, the first question asked will possibly be: “IS IT FUN?“. Fun is the core attribute for any game, regardless of its genre.
Not for Waking.
Even before the first minutes of gameplay, FUN IS A BIG QUESTION MARK.
Waking is about SELF-REFLECTION and that’s the first thing to consider about this game. Self-reflection is not a common habit and CAN BE A PAINFUL PROCESS. There is merit for gamifying this experience as not everyone is open to search for help.
Waking feels more like a THERAPY EXPERIENCE than a gaming experience. Knowing this, making a choice is really simple.
Ask yourself what are you searching for: a therapy gaming experience or a fun gaming experience. There is no right or wrong answer, this choice is just about you.
Choices & Advice
DON’T BUY IT
IF YOU ARE SEARCHING FOR AN TRADITIONAL ACTION-ADVENTURE GAME EXPERIENCE AND IS NOT OPEN TO MEDITATION.
WAIT TO BUY
IF YOU WANT TO TRY A GAMIFIED SELF-REFLECTION EXPERIENCE. PROBABLY, THIS IS A GAME THAT WILL SOON BE IN A SALE.
IF YOU FELL IN NEED OF SELF-REFLECTION EXPERIENCE AND SEE GAMING AS AN ALTERNATIVE.
GAME CAN BE COMPLETED IN 25 TO 35 HOURS.
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