Reality Isn’t Real: Ether One’s Bonkers ‘Restorer’ Trailer

Oh man, I've always wanted to wake up in a creepy, threateningly pristine lab! I have *got* to get a picture of this.

I’ve been intrigued by Ether One since time immemorial. However, if someone were to leap in my head, run around its ominously dark docks that might be some kind of metaphor, and eventually put together all the pieces, they’d find that it’s been a few months. And also that I have a really bad memory. The latest trailer for the brain-bending, reality-warping first-person puzzler continues its frantic wander down memory lane, but now there are mysterious outside forces involved. While our intrepid hero (?) gets lost in someone else’s thoughts, cold, dispassionate voices argue cryptically. Meanwhile, female lead and, er, game world Jean only gets in a couple quick words of her own: “Help me.” Also, a billion different things flash on screen and nothing makes sense ever. Everrrrrrr. But in a good way.

Looks wild, right? Especially given that it’s coming from such a small studio. But yeah, that didn’t make a lick of sense – let alone two, three, or the almighty, forbidden number you’d need to get to the center of a Tootsie Pop. A snazzy new-ish Ether website does, however, at least define what exactly a Restorer is.

“You are a Restorer, an individual with a lost identity who is sent into the minds of mentally ill humans to restructure their broken memories. Tasked with restoring the mind of a client named Jean you must explore the depths of her memories in order to rebuild the fragile structures within.”

“Restore her memories. Restore yours.”

Which is something we pretty much already knew, but now they gave it a fancy title. Honestly, though, I much prefer to dive into things like this with little-to-no foreknowledge. Slipping us a handy package full of Ether’s deepest, darkest secrets would kind of defeat the purpose.

Unless it’s this specific RPS interview. Then it’s completely fine. Because reasons. (Seriously, though, it’ll definitely give you a better idea of what the game, you know, is.)

Ether One’s still aiming for an “early 2013” release date. It looks to be coming along very, very nicely, as well. Are you interested? Does it haunt your spine-rattlingly sterile, mechanically-induced dreams?


  1. jackass00 says:

    Looks dreamy.

  2. SuperNashwanPower says:

    Games I am looking forward to:

    Everyone’s Gone to the Rapture
    Prey 2
    Fallout 4
    STALKER 2 or a bitcomposer roadside picnic game
    Cyberpunk 2077

    So maybe 2 of those have a chance of actually being seen this decade :(

    • GameCat says:

      “STALKER 2 or a bitcomposer roadside picnic game”

      What? That Roadsie picnic game is only our hope or they really announced it?

      • Shuck says:

        They announced having licensed the Roadside Picnic game rights, though confusingly they described them as the rights to “S.T.A.L.K.E.R.” which is completely wrong: link to
        Since they seem confused about what rights they actually have, I’m not sure I put too much faith in their ability to deliver a Roadside Picnic game, but I would like to see such a game.

    • indoorsman says:

      Watch Dogs is probably up your alley then too. No real guarantee at this point that it’ll be good, or even release in 2013, it’s an ambitious game

      • Ross Angus says:

        All of SuperNashwanPower‘s choices are correct. And Watch Dogs is too.

        • SuperNashwanPower says:

          Hi chaps. I just got System Shock 2 off GOG, had no idea it was being released and wanted to play it for so long now! Should fill my open world / simulationey shaped hole for a while, very excited.

          Watch Dogs looks pretty good, sort of Deus Ex HR-ish with incredible visuals. Not sure about the 3rd person view though as I am much more of a 1st person guy. Maybe you will be able to switch?

          • beema says:

            The Watch Dogs trailer had me super-excited until it devolved in to a 3rd-person-cover-based-shooter. I’m hoping that it doesn’t force you to do that and maybe gives you a more pacifist route to take, otherwise it will be disappointing.

  3. golem09 says:

    If there wasn’t so much head bobbing going on while running, this would be my most wanted Oculus game.

  4. greenbananas says:

    No sniper rifles or nazi zombies? Do not want.

    • scatterlogical says:

      Yeah, good thing these guys are indie. I can’t imagine any big publisher int the world taking a ‘risk’ like this.

    • Shuck says:

      Does anyone at least get eaten by a phallic-headed Alien? Are there elves or orcs? Satirical gangsters? No? Clearly this isn’t a video game and I’m not sure why RPS are even discussing it.

  5. P4p3Rc1iP says:

    So… First person Phychonauts on steroids then?

    • says:

      Alternatively: Assassin’s Dream

      Minus the whole “killing” thing, sure… but it’s another game where you’re not really there.

      OR ARE YOU?

  6. Sparkasaurusmex says:

    reminds me of To The Moon for some reason

  7. internisus says:

    Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind: The Game. Yes, please!

  8. gjrud says:

    the lobotomy at the end gave me chills

  9. Premium User Badge

    gritz says:

    First person immersive exploration/puzzle solving with trippy reality bending level design and no dudeshooting?

    This could be my GOTY.

    I’m going to rant here for a second. Yesterday Kotaku posted an interview with Ken Levine about Bioshock Infinite where he explained that while they always cram detail and exploration into their games, they always have to have some kind of skill-based element to give the player agency, which he takes to mean shooting things with guns. To me, that seems really weak and insulting, as though they’re saying players can’t possibly find agency in things like exploration, problem solving, character development, etc. No, the way to get the player’s attention long enough to be force fed these other things is to put a gun in his hand and a bad guy in front of him, and hope he likes the exploration he gets on the side. Bah.

    • jackass00 says:

      Well Bioshock had a multi million dollar budget and it is aiming at mass audience. It has to make big bucks and the publisher won’t be satisfied by measly few hundred thousand sales. So while I agree with your point, and I also enjoy those things you mentioned, I understand, that to achieve their goal they have to base it on simple shooty shooty, stabby stabby mechanics to appeal to the statistical consumer. Sadly that’s how capitalism works, but I think Infinite promises a good compromise between standard FPS mechanics and some more ambitious themes.

    • Faxanadu says:

      Just recently I started to look for 3D first-person puzzle games, and the result is really, really, REALLY thin. I can’t say I’m surprised though, I mean, I’ve been playing for a couple of decades and only now I’m showing some interest towards puzzle/adventure games.

      So far I’ve only found Penumbra which is mostly horror though, and yeah, not much else. You’re pretty much forced into 2D if you wanna play adventure/puzzle. Not that stuff like Deponia doesn’t look good – it’s just that the point of view gives me ZERO immersion. I like immersion.

      Edit: Oh, portals ofc were good.

      • Premium User Badge

        gritz says:

        I consider stealth games to be like puzzle adventure games, and they’re kind of having a revival these days. But yeah, there’s not much else out there, and it’s pretty sad.

      • beema says:

        You might like Penumbra: Requiem, in that case. It’s the third game in the series and it pretty much tosses out all plot and horror elements for a series of physics puzzle rooms that feel Portal-esque.

  10. Felixader says:

    Okay here is something that bothers me when i play an expert of whatever in a game and i have a partner or adviser behind a radio :

    When it gets narrow or critical those advisers tend, like in this trailer, to get whiny and start to complain instead to inform, they start to get annoying.
    And that although one truly supposedly hase done whatever you are doing right now a thousand times before or are well trained in it.

    Dear writers the last thing one needs when it gets narrow or critical is someone constantly nagging into my ear while i try to solve it.
    It gets on my nerves, it provides me with NO information or anything else helpful and the only tension this creates is me thinking “shut up, shut up, shut up…”.
    There is nothing to say against someone continuous informing of the narrowing gap (like: “his data is 60 percent critical” or something”) as long as it doesn’t turn into nagging, Which it most often than not does.

    STOP IT.

  11. donmilliken says:

    In all my years of gaming only one character death, though it happenened offscreen and was totally lame, has caused me to shed a manly tear.

    Oh, Johnny Gat, you are missed! Gone to soon, gone too soon . . .

  12. beema says:

    Looks like Inception meets To The Moon. I’m on board!

  13. DestructibleEnvironments says:

    Psychonauts! link to