Juggler Games and IMGN.PRO’s My Memory of Us is so subtly depressing you probably won’t even realize just how dark most of the scenes are in the game until you’ve walked away and properly processed everything you just experienced.
The game is set as a story a grandfather is telling his grandchild, one about his past. Now, Juggler Games’ description for My Memory of Us does try to prepare you for just what exactly you’ll be unleashing on yourself, but not even the bit where it reads “about events that are touching and horrifying even now,” does the game justice. The game gives players control of a young boy and a young girl, who work together to solve puzzles and have fun. However the game’s backdrop is, well, basically the Nazi occupation of Poland during WWII.
Of course, in game this is explained as an “Evil King plundering the city” with his robot-soldiers. But the fact that we watch as citizens are separated and some marked and forced to move out of their homes to “live in a place that was sealed off from the rest of the city by a huge wall” means its absolutely set during WWII. Because that description can only refer to the Jewis Ghettos set up by the Nazis in cities they occupied.
Much of the imagery in the game (which is almost entirely black and white with very, very small splashes of color) is horrifying, even when slightly cartoonish.
However, My Memory of Us does have a heart. The boy and girl controlled by the player have to work together – as their abilities complement each other. The boy is a master of stealth while the girl can run fast – he can blind enemies, she can dance. However the two often get separated, and your goal is to reunite them. It’s a pretty obvious metaphor, to be honest. But still a heartwarming one.
Which makes the depressing backdrop and the reality of that metaphor depressing as hell. But if there was ever a time for this game, it would be now as the horrors of the Holocaust and WWII are being pushed out of cultural awareness. And that might just be the best possible utility of a game – to educate and entertain.