We tried the Demo of Leila, Indie by Ubik Studios. A journey through Leila’s memories and a life lived
Today we propose a journey into the Demo of Leila, an Indie title by Ubik Studios. If you have never heard of her, you can find our main article here: Leila – Her story in a retrospective narrative. Furthermore, we remind you that the Demo is currently available on the Steam platform. The developers have thought of a demo created specifically for the Next Fest which runs from 9 to 16 October. Made of small fragments of different episodes. Choice designed to avoid spoilers and ruin the gaming experience. A very important factor for those who want to play it is that the demo will be de-activated one week after Next Fest.
The Woods of Memories
The Demo guides us down Leila’s memory lane, in which she acts as a guide. We will see the facts, her memories from her point of view; adopting a retrospective side in savoring certain moments. Her mind is presented to us in the form of a woods, in which to walk.
The path in front of us will lead us to discover some of the phases of Leila’s life. Having reached an arrow with a bucket of Popcorn, all we have to do is delve into the first step of this intricate and rather profound journey into Leila’s memories and emotions.
“Normally I would dig a hole inside myself and then fall into it, but this time I decided that instead of falling, I would willingly go in. Here I am, drifting on the shores of my life.”, says Leila.
From here, the point & click nature of the game opens up; in fact, to proceed with the narrative we will have to find some elements cleverly hidden in the setting. For each element, Leila will comment something as a metaphor for life. Pay close attention, when searching it is possible to scroll the image to the sides but it is not possible to zoom in; so keep your eyes sharp and don’t miss any elements.
When we finish the search for the elements, we find ourselves in a moment of Leila’s life of which she is not very proud. Narrative beauty expresses itself in short but meaningful sentences that touch on sensitive topics. Sense of emptiness, lack, nothingness, realizing the value of time only when it begins to run out. Even at this stage, the point & click nature emerges. From Leila’s sentences about her life, we’ll have to find hidden elements. These are conceptually connected to them; such as an hourglass, a briefcase or a fetus and many others.
As previously, for each object found, Leila will share with us a thought about her experience.
She will tell us about when her daughter confessed to her that she didn’t want to become a mother. The world being an unsafe place; to do so would have been a selfish act. How being needed by someone else gives you a strength that you are unaware of. But also how difficult it is to rediscover your personal value once it is no longer binded to others.
Welcome to my childhood
Leila’s childhood, she welcomes us with an old rusty and broken Robot. “What makes your heart so cold?” Leila exclaims. A bit as if she was actually asking it to herself. Well, to fully access Leila’s childhood we will have to fix the Robot.
To restart its cold heart, we will have to reconnect its colored circuits. And here another feature of the game emerges: challenging puzzles. We will have to overcome several levels to hear ourselves called: Leilaaa!, it was nothing more than a memory of her when she was playing on the console and mother calls her to tell her that she is leaving and she wanted a hug before going out.
This phase actually opens with a memory of youth; the tree house at granny’s house. Now abandoned and almost forgotten, with Leila, we will try to enter it again. Even though it is uncomfortable and Leila can barely fit in, she is happy to relive this memory and the more she relives it the more vivid it becomes.
Is this the key to entering the age of responsibility and wisdom? Wisdom that knows which memories to cherish and which to let go. Leila is put down into adulthood like in a dollhouse. To make us understand the sense of responsibility and routines; we will have small activities to do, in home environments. Such as, for example, collecting the clothes in the laundry basket, arranging the toys in the bedroom, having Leila read a book together with her daughter.
Speaking of reading a book, this will prove more than that. In fact, we will come across an interactive riddle. The pages of the book move,if you can solve the puzzle. Clouds in the night sky, for example, move and can be moved if needed.
Also in this case, based on the puzzle (you have to read between the lines) we will hunt for objects in the animation. What we noticed from the beginning is how the elements blend together perfectly, even if “out of ” context. This makes the research, which is not immediately obvious, more compelling.
When you decipher the riddle in the form of a poem, the pages will come alive, bringing us to the end of this short journey into Leila’s memories.
We know that these are just some of the moments we will experience together with her. We’ll be back soon to tell you the rest. Once again, we want to remind you that the Demo will be de-activated one week after the Next Fest. So, hurry if you want to try the game. Stay updated with us to complete this journey with Leila!
Good Game everybody!