This is a new series I’m introducing onto the main blog! For a long time, I’ve kept both my lifestyle/beauty/fashion stuff separate from my gaming interests, but decided to re-integrate them into one blog. Every so often, I’ll share a game that I can’t stop playing here, and here’s the first one!
A really good friend of mine introduced me to Night in the Woods on a Twitch stream she did months ago, and I played it for the first time a few months ago, and it’s quickly become a comfort game for me.
Night in the Woods is about a 20-year-old college dropout named Mae as she goes back to her hometown, except everything is not as it seems.
You start the game playing as Mae who took the last bus home to her hometown of Possum Springs after deciding to leave college for good. Unfortunately it looks like your parents have forgotten you were coming home that night, so you literally go through the woods to go home.
The afternoon after you come back, you get to meet Mae’s friends as they meet for band practice: Gregg, an energetic fox, Angus, a quiet bear and Gregg’s boyfriend, and Bea, a goth and sullen crocodile who lost her mom in high school. Mae also learns that Casey, another friend, has gone missing and has probably skipped town. For band practice, you play a DDR/Guitar Hero type minigame three times with each song getting harder and harder. The first one is called Die Anywhere Else, the second is Weird Autumn, and the third is Pumpkin Head King. You can also hang out with either Bea or Gregg to change the ending.
Mae then goes to a party with Gregg, Angus, and Bea and subsequently gets drunk and basically embarrasses herself in front of her ex from high school, Cole.
However, Mae starts to have strange dreams after getting drunk at the party, and has them for the next four nights. The goal in these dream-like sequences is to find four musicians that each play a different instrument, and once all four are found, an animal will pop up and the dream sequence and Mae will disintegrate into shapes. This plays an important role as to why Mae left college and why she had to come home.
While you’re exploring Possum Springs, you get the chance to discover Dusk Stars with Mae’s science teacher, Mr. Chazokov. You can visit Mr. Chazokov every two days after Day 2 to find two new Dusk Stars, for a total of eight. You’ll also meet Selmers, Mae’s friend in high school who is a poet. If you listen to her poems every day, you’ll unlock a special sequence in the library when Bea and Mae visit and Selmers is part of the poetry society there.
During Harfest which takes place on Day 6, Mae witnesses a teenager being kidnapped/killed by someone mysterious, and continues having her strange dreams. This leads her to talk with Gregg, Bea, and Angus about investigating. You can investigate up to two areas per letsplay: the graveyard with Bea, the historical society with Gregg, or Possum Jump with Angus. After each encounter, you’ll find the mysterious figure from Harfest essentially stalking Mae, and at the end of the investigation, the hooded figure will chase Mae and Mae will fall and hurt herself and fall into a coma.
Mae does make it to Gregg and Angus’s apartment where the two boys, Bea, and Germ, the little bird who hangs out during band practice hang out in fear of being stalked by whoever was stalking her. Depending on who you hung out with more, Mae will lie on the couch with either Bea or Gregg and reveal that she left college because she had a dissociative disorder, in which she saw everything as just “shapes”, and she is referred to as “killer” by the younger kids in Possum Springs because she beat a classmate up with a bat and almost killed him.
Mae tries to go back to the mines by herself, but is shortly accompanied by the rest of her friends, and they encounter The Cult-a group of miners who live in the mine and make regular sacrifices (nobody who will be missed) to an entity named the Black Goat. The Black Goat is supposedly keeping Possum Springs’ economy alive.
The miners tell Mae that she and her friends can take over once they are gone, but Mae refuses and they are allowed to leave the mine, but Eide-the cult member who has been stalking Mae the entire time, comes back one last time to attack her. Mae fends off Eide and he loses an arm and becomes trapped in the mine with the other miners when the elevator that Mae and her friends took to get down breaks.
At the end, Mae sends out a really long, really heartfelt message to everyone, and they all go and have one final band practice.
Overall, I LOVE this game for several reasons: everyone can relate to Mae in some sense. For me, Mae was a college dropout and so was I, and Mae also had a troubled past which I loved hearing the backstory to. I also love how Mae’s friends are quite diverse, with Bea never having the chance to go to college because of her mother’s death and her consequently having to run her parents’ shop, Gregg being a troublemaker, and Angus balancing out Gregg’s craziness. Possum Springs can be quite relatable too for people who came from a small town, or people who had to leave their small towns for different reasons. The story is also quite interesting with Mae’s dream sequences and her dissociative episodes.
Night in the Woods is on Game Pass and is $20 on Steam and Switch.
Have you played this game before?