Rememoried is an explorative first-person adventure game by the single-manned studio Hangonit. Riddled with puzzle-platforming segments, Rememoried is a game that aims to emulate a world between dreams and memories, depicting a surreal balance between what the player will associate with reality and what the player might not associate with anything at all. It appears to me as a much more dynamic look at the conventions of your standard walking-simulator game.

Something I can easily and cognitively credit Rememoried on is that it’s a fantastic looking game. I often felt like a tourist exploring Hangonit’s world, taking countless screenshots mainly for the purpose of this review. Many of the levels consist of jumping between platforms above an infinite black abyss – a convincingly designed black abyss, I might add, that definitely adds to the often ominous tone of the game. Conclusions to each level are marked by abnormalities in the environment, such as a giant floating eye amidst a series of black rocks or a lens-flare of light amidst an otherwise entirely dark environment. I can’t help but credit Hangonit for designing consistently beautiful and interesting levels.

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Rememoried takes a different approach to what many have come to call the walking-simulator subgenre. As opposed to having the player wonder through one cool looking set-piece until the game decides it’s okay to transport them to the next, the player is given a short line of cryptic advice before being presented with a sort of logic puzzle, often in the form of platforming, to reach the end of each level. Often these puzzles are anti-logic, proposing that the player should “forget” (i.e. look away from platforms) and return later when the level has re-arranged itself, thus allowing for more progress. I felt that this, although an interesting concept, didn’t leave much down to the player – completion of each level is dependent on the game giving you the random chance of allowing you to progress. There is one level in particular that I spent between 15-20 minutes waiting for a series of rocks to appear in the right place for me to finally move on and progress with the game, which was frustrating to say the least.

However, I’d be lying if I said that Rememoried didn’t entirely divert my cast-iron expectations. The environments presented to the player are often unreliable, switching between being dynamic or totally static, meaning that after familiarizing yourself with the mechanics for one level the next level could be based on mechanics entirely opposed to that the player is familiar with. Confusing, I know, but my lack of any cognitive expectation took me on a rollercoaster of emotions – ranging from claustrophobia to agoraphobia, fear to excitement, one general extreme to the next.

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An issue that’s common with this sort of game is it’s length – I found myself finishing off Rememoried between two and three hours. With a $9.99 pricetag (£6.99 in the UK), this length can seem a little short to those that haven’t played, however, I thought that it was just right – giving the player enough time to identify the overarching message of Rememoried and experience the surreal gameplay without getting too sick of it. At it’s core, Rememoried is based around the premise of surrealism and dreams, a premise that (although interesting) doesn’t need any more than the designated two to three hours to be fully explored. I thought the game could have perhaps justified a longer length if there was a cognitive narrative or fun progression of gameplay, but Rememoried doesn’t develop that much past it’s preface, even if the preface is fantastic.

However, there were a few things that drew me away from the game. The voice acting behind the protagonist felt incredibly artificial, and almost comical – It’s hard to fully immerse yourself in a world made up of floating eyeballs and orbs of light when you have a man reciting lines ripped straight from an existential crisis as if he received training from a slightly enthusiastic incarnation of Microsoft narrator.

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In spite of this, I still enjoyed myself while playing Rememoried. It leaves you at the mercy of each mysterious environment while still giving you a strange sort of control – a balance that not only interested me but also left me feeling as though progressing was a real accomplishment as opposed to a pre-prompted progression of the narrative. Reviewing such an abstract title was definitely a challenge, but I’d recommend it for all those that enjoyed games like Proteus or Only If that want a little more interactivity with the same level of intrigue.