It’s been said that, at the end of your life, your memories flash before your eyes. I have asked any number of corpses if this is true, but as of yet, haven’t gotten a satisfying answer. Still, I do know that good memories can bring you back from a terrible place, and when a man finds himself alone and on the brink of death after a bike ride in Sometimes You’s Retention, he’ll need all the good times he can recall to save himself.
Retention asks players to choose photographs during the last 630 beats of the biker’s heart. The pictures, seemingly random at times, are a way of constructing a lifetime for the man that will either bring him back from the brink or leave him dead on the side of the road. That may be a bit of an oversimplification, as there are four good and four bad endings, but how you create the man’s life and memories is entirely up to you. With hundreds of photographs to choose from, each taken by the developers, it’s created a different style of game where the player has a powerful role in setting up the storyline. Like a choose-your-own-adventure story with hundreds of available options, each player’s experience with the game will be their own.
Already available on Desura for some time, Retention was only recently Greenlit and thus available to purchase on Steam, bringing Steam trading cards and a copy of the soundtrack to the latest version. With its simple interface and emphasis on players building a story without words, Retention looks to be an intriguing experiment in video game narrative.
Retention is currently available for $0.99 on Steam, $2.99 on Desura, or for free on iOS. For more information on the game and its developers, you can head to Sometimes You’s website, or follow one of the developers on Twitter.