Coma: A Mind Adventure, a Gorgeous Indie Puzzler that Promises an Adult Story

Coma Studios, a three person team that also brought gamers the Warcelona Left 4 Dead 2 campaign, has decided to make a game rather than a mod this time. That game is Coma: A Mind Adventure, and it’s a first person puzzler adventure game set in the mind of a person in a coma after a tragic accident.

From the developers:

“Coma is a combination of many ideas we have for new videogame mechanics that now we are ready to make a reality. The game will be an FPP (first person puzzler, not first person shooter) with puzzles and a deep and personal story behind it. You won’t find Space Marines or meaningless violence in Coma, as opposed to most First Person Shooters. You will find a mature adult story about life; sadness, violence, remorse, guilt, hope, and what is more important;  self-accomplishment.”

Although that may sound rather like TRAUMA and other indie games (after all, the developers themselves describe it as “a mix of games like Dear Esther, Portal 2, Shadow of the Colossus or Journey”), what sets Coma apart is its gameplay. Players will control the environment in order to solve puzzles and progress through the game.

The developers are planning on doing about 12 different environments, ranging from forests and volcanoes to more abstract landscapes. Some of the ways in which players will be able to use the environment to solve puzzles include:

  • Fog: useful for hiding from enemies, disabling force fields and more
  • Night: activates portals and light objects that only exist at night
  • Rain: makes things grow and also causes floods; both of these things help players get to high areas or find new paths

Although the trailer makes the game out to be mostly peaceful, there will also be chaotic events such as tornadoes and sand storms in addition to bad guys like the colossus that will require more than just a manipulation of the environment to defeat.

The story will be told as the player explores the comatose person’s mind. The puzzles and objects in the environment will form metaphors and act as hints to tell the story. Furthermore, the player will also be able to hear the voices of characters that are in the room with the comatose person. The information learned from these characters will then be transformed into a level filled with symbolic objects and metaphors. What’s neat about this last part is that some backers will even be able to influence what these characters say.

How? Via the viral alternative reality game that backers will have access to. Here’s how it works:

“This viral game will be done though the internet; viral facebook accounts, viral characters, viral websites, viral newspapers, and others. Here is a hint about one thing that will happend in the viral game: it is said that when you’re in a coma, you can listen to the real word and this affects you. Imagine that somebody goes to visit the character, and tells him word for word exactly what you have written with the other backers, and in the game, when the player listens to this voice, this will create a scenario surrounding him in real time (like in Inception); in ther words, the entire scenario/level will be metaphor based on what YOU have written.

The more money you contribute to the game, the more influence you will have in this viral game, and consequently, the final game itself. The developers are looking for about $7,400 to make their game to an extent that feels full and complete to them. Every little bit helps. To read more about the game, track its progress, and contribute to the cause, visit Coma’s IndieGoGo page here.

The game will eventually release via Steam on PC and Mac. Check out the debut trailer, some concept art and screenshots below: