Oh, now this looks intriguing. A while back, Benjamin Rivers released Home, a side-scrolling horror experiment about building a character's personality through moment-to-moment gameplay. Choices re-contextualized and even outright changed backstory elements, and the whole thing was just a really interesting way to tell a story. So then, what's next for Rivers? Why, an equally experimental, er, dating sim, of course - but with fewer menus and more open exploration. Alone With You is about the lone survivor of a failed terraforming project and his/her AI companion. But there's a sinister undercurrent creeping its skeletal fingers around the game's mushy gushy heart. Trailer below.
So it's a game with "romantic subtext," but it doesn't function at all like a traditional dating sim. Here's Rivers' explanation:
"Alone With You is a single-player exploration game with a romantic subtext that gets deeper as you progress. You play the final, reluctant crew member of a failed terraforming project on a distant planet that is slowly falling apart. Your only companion is the still-functioning A.I. of the installation you inhabited."
"Its main features are: 1) A narrative-focused experience where story and gameplay are completely intertwined. 2) A gender-neutral protagonist that allows romance options for all players. 3) A simple, brand-new control scheme optimized for controllers that allows for ease of play."
Beyond that, Rivers is being fairly cagey so as to avoid spoilers. Home was quite good, however, and this is certainly an alluring premise. I just hope it doesn't go down the cliche path of the AI turning into some murderous moon crescent scythe of logic, reason, and weird robo-passion. At least, not unless it's done in a really new and different way. We'll just have to wait and see, though.
There's no release date yet, but we'll apparently be hearing more in the coming weeks and months. Do you like what you've seen of it so far?