The Shadows that Run Alongside our Car – Vendreditch Game of the Week

The Shadows that Run Alongside our Car is a visual novel written by Lorelei Nguyen and Diana Taylor can be found at time of writing at this page for “pay-what-you-want”. 

Screen Shot 2016-08-19 at 11.23.35 PM

The Shadows that Run Alongside our Car is a compact visual novel about a pair of survivors during a zombie apocalypse. And yes that sounds like well-worn ground at this point, but this 2-scene work is more interested in the personal edge. More time is spent on the two characters taking glee in finding a functional radio broadcast than any zombie related horror. The game has got 2 character paths that covers the same timeframe with 2 different internal monologues.

The Shadows that Run Alongside our Car is a tone piece first and foremost. It drops the player into a single conversation with no background knowledge of either character. It leaves the player to spend the length of the story sussing out details about them. The characters don’t have a tremendous about to reveal about themselves but enough to cover the game’s short length. This does let them come off as relatively average people, which definitely lets the player sympathize or relate to the moment at hand.

Most other zombie games  (The Walking Dead or The Last of Us as examples) have the scene where the characters drive around safely and chat. But those moments are usually overwhelmed by the action scenes that bookend them or more dramatic personal moments later in the games. Here is The Shadows that Run Alongside our Car you only get that calm ride. It lets that kind of moment have the poignancy that it maybe deserves. It’s a nice vibe that pulls off both the dour reality of its setting and the humanity of those who have to live in it.

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