Games

Visual Novel: I Woke Up Next To You Again

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While we love to experience visual novels that fall under the common umbrella of dating, slice of life, fantasy,and adventure, sometimes you want something that shakes things up.

In the visual novel I Woke Up Next To You Again, we get quite a bit of different tastes in one good, but also short game.

“”You’d told me,

Hey, this is a one-time thing, and I said yeah, of course –

Yet here we are.”

..who, exactly, am I waking up next to?

A romance about a more-than-one-night stand;

A psychological thriller about toxic addiction.”

A visual novel about a one night stand? As boring as that premise may sound on paper (or screen), it is this premise that makes I Woke Up truly shine with individual merit.

In a black and white, washed out aesthetic, you get to choose who you woke up near (boy or girl). You’re asked this as haunting, atmospheric music plays in the background of a city blurred with a noir style paint brush. There is instantly a sense of anxiety you’ll get as you make the choice.

You’ve move to a new place, and you’ve found someone, the game tells you. And if you’re like us and chose a boy then you’re shown a pale, drawing style aesthetic of a man in bed. The sense of unknown and unfamiliarity sinks in quickly, which mirrors the feeling of waking up to someone you’ve only met the night before quite haunting.

But as you’ll find out pretty quickly, which is already given away in the title, this is the second time you two have been together. You’re put into the shoes of a silhouetted main protagonist as you decide how the two of you are going to treat the experience.

It was nice having the ability to me more clingy or totally more disconnected.

One of the most appealing things is the way the developer, Angela He (Zephyo), executes the exposition. She lets the story do the talking but puts up the questions at the most important times.

When playing it, we couldn’t help but feel a sense of inclusion and yet also a sense of intimacy. And given the subject matter of the game, it’s important to create an intimate feeling between player and narrative.

Some visual novel enthusiast may be worried about the value and play time. The game is short, as you’ll finish it in about 3 hours. There is incentive to replay though as there are over 4 different endings and two genders to choose from.

To make the deal even sweeter, the price you’ll pay for the game is put to you, though if you think you’ll fall in love with it like we did, we’d suggest paying a little extra just to give Angela some love for creating such an atmospheric game.

I Woke Up Next To You Again is available now.

Currently a grad student, professionally awkward person, writer, and all around total geek. His works are featured on PeculiarBeings.co, PopGeekly.com, and his personal blog lifeonthehighwire.wordpress.com.