These are my favorite stories: the new games, the new ideas, things that might end up being boring and uninspiring to play but remain unspoiled and full of potential the first time you lay your eyes on it. It’s the moment before my cynicism kicks in, and my childlike wonder is pulled kicking and screaming to the reality that everybody’s really just out to make a cheap buck. Ether appears to be one of those games that lose that cynicism for a moment, and at a glance it seems to be some kind of hybrid of Amnesia: The Dark Descent, To the Moon, and some kind of meta-ARG. I don’t say Amnesia because it looks particularly horror laden, but mainly because of its weaponless, lantern inclusive, first person perspective.
In truth, Ether is advertised as a first person adventure game, set in an alternate world where mental health professionals called “restorers” project themselves into people’s minds to sort things out in there personally. You play one of these restorers who has become lost in the mind of woman named Jean, simultaneously managing to forget everything about yourself in the process. By seeking out three very important items, you hope to unravel Jean’s past, your own identity, and the link you share that brought you inside her mind in the first place. Curiously enough, QR codes seem to make appearances in the game as a narrative device, allowing you to scan them for additional material to aid in the unlocking of the mysteries at hand, like the one present at the end of this trailer.
Developer White Paper Games’ first commercial product, Ether promises to include exploration based gameplay of 4 worlds, narrative focused puzzles, an emotional story, and multiple endings. Their website states that we can expect to see Ether released digitally “soon” for PCs and Macs.
Links: Official Ether Site