Books, as we all know, are filled with worlds, characters, & stories that grab us & make us feel all the things. Whether it be joy, anger, or utter sadness, books are great ways to experience the full range of human emotion without ever having to leave your home. But books aren’t the only place where you can find these types of stories. And today I’d like to share with you one of my other favourite ways to get my fix for feelings.
I’m a BIG gamer. I may not be the best, I may not do it all the time, but I absolutely adore video games. Some people still see games as a time-suck, a brain killer, a thing without substance. Where people just shoot each other in fictional war settings while yelling obscenities at others through a headset. BUT THEY ARE WRONG!!
Though there are video games of this exact nature, like every other form of media, there are SO MANY different genres & types that you can find to enjoy. I am a firm believer that video games ARE art, as legit as paintings & novels. And today I’d like to share with you a few of the games that I’ve played with stories so beautiful & heartbreaking that I am not ashamed to admit to crying over.
Ori & the Blind Forest
Let’s start with one of the biggest emotion hitter for me. This game made my cry in the first 10 minutes, was super frustrating in the middle, & continued to bring all the feels throughout, especially towards the end.
It’s such a beautiful story surrounding a little guy named Ori trying to figure out what’s killing the Blind Forest, fighting enemies, & trying to bring life back to the world. I highly recommend this game. It’s a gorgeous side scrolling platformer filled with amazing visuals, fantastic gameplay, & one of my fave soundtracks. Everything is just…..so good.
Another side scrolling platformer where you play a little guy (Yarny, made of YARN!! so cute) navigating the world & avoiding obstacles to UNRAVEL the story of a family & the hardships they’ve endured & the good things they’d experienced.
It’s a beautiful game that, technically didn’t actually make me CRY, but brought up feels right in the chest & wouldn’t let me go until I finished it. And then I went back to play some more because you can’t just play through it once.
Fatal Frame (2 & 3)
This is one of my favourite horror franchises. The games are terrifying & the stories have a lot of Japanese folklore incorporated in them & the prominence of female protagonists is the best. In the 2nd you play as twins, Mio & Mayu, who find themselves trapped in the Lost Village filled with spirits & terrifying activities. In the 3rd you play as Rei, trapped in the Manor of Sleep of a hellish dreamworld where you’re just trying to figure out how to break a curse & keep anybody else from suffering the fate of the Tattooed Priestess. All while grieving the death of her fiance.
Fatal Frame 2 freaked me out & I loved it. You mainly play as Mio, the stronger of the twins, & are always losing Mayu, the quieter (also injured) twin. A lot of the game is chasing after her & trying to figure out what exactly is going on in the Lost Village, how it came to BE lost, & how to escape. But this is another of those games where you just can’t help but care for the characters & just want to get these girls home safe. So when it ends, you just cry & scream & feel everything. No specific spoilers, but it’s just not fair. I am not over it.
The end of Fatal Frame 3 hit me SO HARD in the feels that I found myself, during one cut-scene in particular involving said fiance, with tears streaming down my face. It was such a well produced/acted scene that you could just FEEL the pain & anguish emanating from Rei. It is still, after all these years, one of my favourite scenes in a game, even though it is so ridiculously sad. I’d give more info but I really don’t want to spoil anything. I think the 3rd installment is seriously underrated, to be completely honest.
The Last of Us
Oh this game!
So it starts you off playing as the MC, Joel’s, daughter when an outbreak occurs worldwide (or at least across the US?) where people are becoming infecting by spores and essentially becoming zombies. So the whole world is going to hell & people are dying & there is a lot of emotion in the opening alone.
Then the rest of the game you play as Joel years later surviving the aftermath & you end up getting a mission to transport a girl named Ellie who may be immune to the infection to a group of people that are working on a cure. You travel cross country, fight monsters, & grapple with a few morality choices in the end that leave you in awe & more than a little emotional. This game is equal parts beautiful to look at & play, & the story is something else. You really fall in love with the dynamic between Joel & Ellie & the decisions you are forced to make as the game progresses.
This game really is, at its core, about humanity. And don;t even get me started on the DLC, Left Behind, that released for this. All about Ellie & her friend & there is so much queer diversity & adorableness that the heartbreak they shove in there…..You know it’s coming from playing the core game, but it doesn’t make it sting any less.
And last BUT CERTAINLY NOT LEAST, the game that made me ABSOLUTELY DIE in a river of my own tears;
Life is Strange
WHAT CAN I SAY ABOUT LIFE IS STRANGE BESIDES ASDFGHJKL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Ok ok ok, Life is Strange is an episodic game about a girl named Max who’s super into photography & moves back to her childhood town for her senior year of high school at a special school where she’s specifically going for photography. She has a dorm & a famous photographer for a teacher & everything! There’s a hella good soundtrack of indie music and actual composition pieces. There’s diversity & nuance & queerness & a little bit of magic. See, Max finds out after a confrontation in the beginning of the game that she has the power to mess with time.She rewinds the events to fix what she sees happen & save a life & it leads to all these events in game that force you to make decisions that VERY MUCH DO effect how the rest of the game goes. Who lives, who dies, who you ultimately save in the end.
This is such a roller coaster of emotions. So many twists & turns. A few things you’ll probably see coming, a few you won’t, but I’ll be damned if you won’t, if not cry, at least choke up a bit at some point in this game. Some decisions are timed. Make the wrong conversation choice, & it could mean someone’s death. The right selection & the bullies get what’s coming to them. The connection between Max & her old childhood friend Chloe is so strong, despite the drama of Max leaving town years before that you’re rooting for them through it all.
I have such a hard time explaining all of my feelings for this game because I just want to gush about it all, but know that the end of this game, what I’m pretty sure is the canonical ending (despite nobody really wanting it to be, I know) literally made me cry like an absolute baby. I was a mess. Tears everywhere. I had a hard time catching my breath & dealing with it. That is how strong the story is. How much it connects with you.
It is beautiful & completely heartbreaking &, if nothing else, I need you to play this game. There’s a reason it’s won so many awards for it’s story alone.
And that’s it!!
There are more game stories that I adore, but these are the ones that hit me in the feels the most.
Have any of you played these?
Heard of them?
What games made you feel all the feels??
LET ME KNOW!!!