A Space for the Unbound is an upcoming game from Indonesia-based game studio Mojiken and game publisher Toge Productions. If the latter rings a bell, that’s because we’ve covered one of their games before: Coffee Talk. In Coffee Talk, you play as a barista serving up special beverages to characters of varying species and backgrounds, hearing their stories as they confide in you over a cup of coffee.
What made Coffee Talk so effective at conveying its narratives was its multi-species cast of characters. While they had horns, tails, and fangs, their stories and struggles felt human, and you could argue that their inhuman forms helped to make Coffee Talk’s narratives feel much more universal.
A Space for the Unbound follows a similar concept of bringing together fantasy elements with slice-of-life events to tell a universal story of human connection, but unlike Coffee Talk which is set in a fictional, fantasy version of Seattle, A Space for the Unbound is set somewhere much closer to home for its developers: a rural town in Indonesia, in the 1990s.
In A Space for the Unbound’s Prologue (which is now playable as a free demo), players take control of Atma, a high schooler helping a young writer named Nirmala to finish her story. As you help Nirmala come up with a proper ending, you’re tasked with exploring the town to retrieve a special item at her home. With her cat Bosque at your side, you’ll be walking from street to street to take in the sights and figure out a way into Nirmala’s home without alerting her ill-tempered father.
It all seems like a straightforward puzzle exploration game at first, but it quickly evolves into fantasy when Nirmala brings out a “magic Red book” that allows Atma to dive into people’s minds. It’s through Atma’s ability to “Space Dive” (as Nirmala calls it) that you’re able to enter an NPC’s mind to affect how they act in the real world.
Through the game’s Space Dive sequences, players get a glimpse into the thoughts and emotions running through other people’s minds, and it’s here where the game explores deeper themes of human connection and conflict. At a certain point, you’re tasked with walking through a crowd of naysayers in Nirmala’s mind to help her clear out negative thoughts and find confidence in her writing.
The Prologue includes two Space Dive sequences, both of which show promise in how the full game will utilize both the “mindscapes” and the real world in its puzzle-adventure gameplay. While the demo doesn’t provide much to go on with regards to the game’s plot, it presents some interesting characters in Atma, Nirmala, and Raya, a mysterious girl who seems to have powers just like Atma.
With gameplay reminiscent of point-and-click adventure games, a setting that feels close to home for us as fellow Southeast Asians (their neighborhoods look just like ours!), and an interesting premise, A Space for the Unbound’s Prologue makes it a game worth watching out for when it releases this September.
A Space for the Unbound is set to be released for PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Mac OS, and PC. You can find the demo as well as more information on the game on its official Steam page.
Are there any other indie releases you’re looking forward to this year? Share them with us in the comments! For more news and updates on upcoming indie releases, be sure to stay tuned to our website and Facebook page.
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