November 17, 2023

Andreas Betsche

Helen: A Narrative Game about Self-discovery and Gratitude

November 17, 2023 | Andreas Betsche

Eternal Dream, the studio behind The Sun Shines Over Us, recently announced their latest title, Helen, at IGDX 2023. For this project, they collaborate with Glory Jam, the developers of What Comes After and Hello Goodboy.

A screenshot from the narrative game Helen.
Helen is the protagonist of the game, and she dreams of becoming a professional violinist.

Help Helen appreciate her life again

The story follows the eponymous Helen, an aspiring and talented violinist stuck in a mundane 9-to-5 job and gradually losing her appreciation for the good things in her life. After discovering a mysterious letter containing origami, Helen begins self-discovery and starts to notice the beauty in life that she had previously overlooked. As she strives to achieve her goals and balance her work life, Helen attempts to uncover the identity of the sender of the origami letter. Along the way, she learns to be more grateful for the things she has.

A screenshot showing the game Helen.
While searching for the origami sender, Helen explores her hometown.

A narrative game mixed with exploration, journaling and mini-games

The game features an exploration aspect, where players can roam around the city to discover the mysterious origami kill … sender and meet new people. Helen keeps a journal to jot down her daily activities, which players can customize and decorate to their liking. The journal helps her to remember her experiences at the end of each day before embarking on a new adventure. In addition to the main quests, the developers have promised that many mini-games in the game world will provide a good distraction.

Another screenshot showing Helen's journal.
A significant part of the gameplay involves writing and customizing Helen’s journal.

High expectations for emotional storytelling

Both development studios have demonstrated their ability to create sensitive and thought-provoking games, whether it is about mental health or death itself. We are optimistic that their collaboration on Helen will further enhance their strengths. The narrative game will be released on Steam, supporting both English and Bahasa Indonesia language options, in the first half of 2024, and players can look forward to joining Helen on her gratitude journey.

Andreas Betsche

Andreas Betsche founded Virtual SEA in early 2016 after researching Cambodian mobile games for his Master’s thesis. He has a background in Southeast Asia studies and has worked and lived in Cambodia, Malaysia, and Indonesia. Since he has been actively playing games since the early 90s, combing both worlds in Virtual SEA brought together both of his passions.

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