Call me a masochist, but I’m a sucker for a depressing story – especially one that comes in a deceptively adorable package. Developers Killmonday Games cater to weirdos like me with their beautifully creepy stories, first with the Alice-in-Wonderlandesque Fran Bow and now with their latest game, Little Misfortune. Its demo launched on Steam and Itch.io today, a short tale of growing up, hell, and glitter.
A self-aware narrator introduces us to the game’s eponymous protagonist with one of the best hooks I’ve heard in a long time: “This is Misfortune. She’s a wonderful child from a not so wonderful family. Today is the day she will die.” Things get a bit awkward when it turns out she can hear him too, but the newly named “Mr. Voice” derails any questions about her impending doom by promising her the prize of eternal happiness if she can complete his quest. Step one of which is simply walking out the front door.
With an adorable accent (at least I think it’s an accent?), Misfortune happily walks throughout her house throwing puffs of glitter and sharing way more information than she ought to. Like how mommy had wanted an abortion but it was illegal or how her grandmother wears a diaper. All the while you pick between seemingly inconsequential choices that the game’s description promises will carry implications in the long run. For instance, when choosing which toy to tote along on my adventure, I chose Stoney the stone, a rock Misfortune’s father threw at her that now sports a drawn-on frowny face.
Oh, and sporadically Misfortune’s surroundings flash to a burning hellscape, which Mr. Voice assures her is just her imagination. I’m sure it’s nothing to worry about and won’t be significant to the story in any way.
With art by Natalia Martinsson, Little Misfortune looks like a Madeline children’s book by way of Tim Burton, which is something I didn’t even know I needed. The game’s description promises dogs to pet, a pet cemetery to visit, and petty crimes to commit as well.
Little Misfortune doesn’t have a release date yet but it’s slated to come out sometime this year on PC with possible console and mobile releases “coming later.”