Game Review: Drowning

Game Review: Drowning

In Drowning, a teenage boy reflects on his depression while going for a long walk. I appreciated him bringing up some of the physical symptoms that the illness can cause. On top of the more well known mood problems, he also has headaches, nausea, and insomnia. Some of us with depression also experience it in our bodies. I have some physical symptoms, myself. How ironic when he said he stays up late playing video games to distract himself from insomnia ~ I was playing it in bed around 2:00 am, dealing with the same thing!

The mist around this bridge makes me think of the brain fog people sometimes refer to with depression, or other brain conditions.

His metaphor about depression being a heavy suit of armor that he can’t take off reminded me of Alphonse, from the anime Fullmetal Alchemist. After an alchemy accident, Alphonse’s soul gets stuck in a suit of armor, which leaves him unable to sleep. In the episode “Father Before the Grave”, he tells his brother that being awake for hours on end while the other characters sleep makes his nights very lonely.

This poor guy needs a cat, they’re often awake at night!

I didn’t understand Drowning’s narrative structure until late in the game. Frank Duran on Galaxy of Geek explains exactly how it went for me, too: “The actual writing confuses from the very beginning. The writer personifies his depression as a “you” or a person he is talking to. They don’t establish this though. So for the first ten minutes of this tale, I assumed the writer had a really shitty friend. When the writer states that he no longer had any friends, I was like “wait what about this shitty friend you keep talking to?” Then I realized what was going on.”

Still, I appreciate that developer Polygonal Wolf cares about bring more mental health content to the world of gaming. Their character’s slow walk through nature fits well with his introspection about what he has gone through. Since I can’t find much information on the developer, I think this is their first game. I’d love to try more of their work if they make more games in the future.

*Reposted from one of my previous blogs, edited for wording and formatting

Featured image: from official Nintendo description. A teenage boy walks by trees and a waterfall.

Works Cited

Drowning. Polygonal Wolf, Nintendo Switch (also available for P.C), 2019. Accessed 17 Sept. 2019.

“Father Before the Grave.” Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, Part 2, Episode 7. Written by Hiroshi Onogi, directed by Yasuhiro Irie, 2009. Netflix.

Duran, Frank. “Drowning on Switch Review.” Galaxy of Geek, 15 Feb. 2019. Accessed 18 Sept. 2019.

Spooky Halloween/Samhain Entrance

Spooky Halloween/Samhain Entrance

Happy Samhain, everyone! This year, it’s a bittersweet one for me because it was my mom’s favorite holiday, and this is my first one without her since she died. Here’s a pic of me wearing her Halloween vest today.

If it’s hard to see, it has a pattern of ghosts, spiderwebs, eyes in dark rooms, and candy corn! Speaking of spiderwebs, there was a huge one over my apartment door recently. I legit thought it was a festive prank at first.

When she was alive, I celebrated Samhain with her mostly just to support her interest in it and spend time together. My friend Raccoon helped me understand how this holiday can be meaningful in itself. He said that he doesn’t have much family, so using the time to celebrate his ancestors helps him cope. I have no other family to turn to now that she’s gone, so I appreciate his insight.

Here’s a witch Pusheen that I got soon after she died. Witchcraft was part of her belief system, which I initially learned from her. We used Pusheen stickers often in Facebook messenger.

This little witch kitty helps me stay connected to her.

I took this Pusheen with me to meet Raccoon, too. My mom can’t be replaced, but I feel a bit of our relationship still living in my friendship with another witch now, and potential for more relationships to grow over time.

The featured image is of Prince Pumpkaboo, from The Gourgeist Festival episode of Pokemon. My mom and I watched that episode on our last Samhain together. She loved Pokemon, and I still do! Pumpkaboo is a ghost and grass type, based on a pumpkin. Maybe my mom’s spirit turned into this Pokemon, haunting a pumpkin somewhere today, lol.

Thanks for reading. Stay spooky!