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Gods Will Be Watching

Surviving Earned Me A Round Of Applause
by Mike Futter on Apr 14, 2014 at 06:17 AM
Platform PC, Linux, iOS
Publisher Devolver Digital
Developer Deconstructeam
Rating Rating Pending

Day 18: Our radio is repaired, and we should have just enough food to hold out for rescue. I think a ship will be by to pick us up in seven days, but with the aggressive wildlife closing in, our dog ill, and my partner starting to lose hope, it's going to be close.

Things were bad when we crashed on this rock. Days are short, and we have a limited amount of time each day to gather firewood, hunt, make medicine, cook, and keep spirits up. Our morale officer ran off after day four. Coward. We never saw her again.

I pushed our doctor hard to make enough medicine to hold us out. The stress got to him, though. I think it was on day seven we woke up to find he had run off. Never saw him again either, but he did his job. Good riddance and more food for us.

The engineer was the next to abandon us. I had him focused on repairing the radio, but he was expendable. Our trusty robot was able to complete that task, and he doesn't even need to eat.

It was just me, my partner, the dog, and the tin can after about 10 days. I thought for sure that my friend would take off, but I kept him busy making spears and hunting, and he kept us well fed. I kept our fire going and cooked our meals.

Things were dicey for a while, but without needing to share with the deserters, the two of us and our four-legged friend slept with full bellies most nights. We started sending the dog out to hunt when we got low on bullets. As long as he was warm and fed, he usually came back with something.

Things could have gone very differently, though. Without a fire, we would have frozen. Had the others stuck around, we could have been low enough on rations that we might have had to sacrifice someone for food.

I chose to sacrifice morale in order to keep my party small. I pushed those crew members to the breaking point. I wanted them to run. I didn't want to share my food once they weren't useful. I survived.

The crowd that had gathered behind me erupted in applause.

Gods Will Be Watching is unlike most point-and-click games you've played. At PAX East, developer Deconstructeam offered three different scenarios, each of which is a matter of holding out for a set number of days.

I failed the torture scene in miserable fashion. I thought I was a tough guy, taking the punches and the hammers to the knees. It was when the pliers came out and removed my teeth that I overestimated my fortitude.

Like the survival scenario I depicted above, the torture scene is a management of choices within a limited amount of time. It requires you to get through the day without cracking and without dying. You can lie to your captors, but your success rate is low, growing only when you stay quiet.

After day two, an ally drops into the spaceship upon which you're being held. He can't rescue you, but he can bring you medicine to heal your wounds, painkillers to withstand torture (at the cost of natural health recovery the next night), or information to help you lie. He tells you that you have to hold out and take the abuse for 20 days before rescue arrives.

I made it to day three.

The choices in Gods Will Be Watching are brutal. The game challenges your morals and it forces you to make the decisions which we are all terrified of ever being posed.

It wraps these quandaries in a familiar point-and-click gameplay loop with visuals reminiscent of Superbrothers: Sword and Sworcery and the classic adventure game Another World. Despite the pixelated nature of the visuals, the torture is still brutal and the stress evidenced on the shaking members of the stranded party comes through clearly.

Gods Will Be Watching will test you. It will make you question how you would act in these stressful situations. Will you survive, or will you be another casualty? You'll have your chance to find out when Gods Will Be Watching is released this July on PC, Mac, and Linux.

Update: Gods Will Be Watching is releasing on July 24, 2014.

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Gods Will Be Watching

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