A MAZE. / Berlin 2021

10th International Games and Playful Media Festival

Days Dark

DD Video

by Michael Luo (China)

Genre: Walk-Sim, Visual Novel

Days Dark is a short, alternative walking simulator game set in a mysteriously barren land. The protagonist (player) is a middle-aged woman carrying a basket of valuable food to feed her family. She needs to survive this treacherous land filled with hungry dogs, hungry ghouls, and an oppressive king demanding her tribute. The gameplay is designed to imitate walking and invoke the physical pain of running when encountering enemies by rapidly altering two buttons to move forward.

Days Dark is an ode to the forgotten matriarchs, who carried generations of family, including my own, through the darkest days. Loosely based on the events during the Great Leap Forward in my home province, this game explores the pain, oppression, and marginality experienced by my grandmother, her sisters, and their mother’s forgotten sacrifices living under traditional patriarchy.

Platform: PC, Mac